In 2015, 991 people were shot dead by police in the United States, reported The Washington Post. An incident that could have gone either way that year involved PhD student Lawrence Crosby. He was handcuffed, tackled and questioned for half an hour because the police believed he had stolen a car which, as it turned out belonged to him.
Now in 2017, the police have finally made dash-cam footage (video above) of the incident available to the public, even as the original case is the subject of a lawsuit filed by Lawrence.
“This is my vehicle, sir,” Lawrence can be heard saying in the video. “I have evidence...I purchased this vehicle January 23, 2015, from Libertyville Chevrolet.”
Lawrence was attempting to fix the strip on the roof of his car with a wooden board when a passerby called the police, thinking that she was witnessing a break-in. While he stepped out of the car with his hands raised when the police switch on the blue lights, five officers charged at him and forced him to the ground.
None of the officers was charged for their action, and the local police department have defended their actions. Speaking before the full video (below) on its official YouTube channel, Sergeant Dennis Leaks said that the action was “in compliance with our procedures as it pertains to this type of situation.”
However, not all official voices concurred.
“There’s underlying problems in our town that we’re not admitting,” Alderman Brian Miller, who is running for mayor of Evanstone, where the incident took place, told The Washington Post. “There’s a true desire that people have – they want to address these problems and actually solve them. But we don’t want to necessarily admit that we have these problems.”