UPDATED: 11:00 a.m. EDT, June 8 — Robert Johnson was violently assaulted by Mesa, Arizona cops and now his attorney is demanding the officers be held accountable beyond being put on “administration leave.”
Attorney Joel Robbins said at a press conference yesterday, “This is a case where more words needed to be used, and less fists. Once (Johnson) had leaned back against the wall he was incapable of continuing any kind of fight because he’s leaning against a wall.”
Will Biascoechea, the president of the police union that represents two of the officers involved, is asking people to “urge caution and patience rather than a rush to judgment.” In reality, the cops should have had patience instead of rushing to pummel a man.
Johnson suffered a concussion, scrapes and bruises. He said at the press conference, “I want Mesa to be held accountable for what they have done.” Watch a clip from the press conference below:
Just before midnight on May 23, 33-year-old Robert Johnson was at an apartment complex with his friend Erick Reyes in Mesa, Arizona. According to reports, Reyes was trying to enter the apartment complex and his ex-girlfriend called 911 saying he was attempting to “break in” to her home. When police arrived, they told Reyes to sit down. According to AZ Central, the officers claim, “An officer approached Johnson in the video and patted him down to ensure that he was not armed. When other officers arrived, after the pat-down, they commanded Johnson to sit down but he refused — and that’s when they punched him repeatedly.” He was beaten until he was unconscious.
Johnson was then “charged with disorderly conduct and hindering,” ABC 15 reported. According to Johnson’s lawyers, there was no resisting or refusing, and if you watch the video, officers attack Johnson within seconds of talking to him.
To make matters worse, the thugs acted as if it did not happen. They never said a word, but surveillance footage leaked and Chief Ramon Batista claims he just became aware of the video last week. He told ABC 15, “This in no way represents the whole work that is done every day. They’re human beings and certainly at first glance, this looks like a mistake.” Human beings? A mistake? This is not a human mistake, these are savage thugs who are wildly beating a man because they can.
As of now, the three officers who were assaulting Johnson have been placed on administrative leave when they clearly should be fired and have criminal charges filed against them. Johnson’s lawyer released the following statement, which read in part, “Mr. Johnson was sitting peacefully against a wall when the assault began. He did not resist. The misconduct of these officers would have gone unnoticed if it had not been captured by surveillance videos at the apartment complex where the assault occurred.” The statement continued, “We hope and pray that the Mesa Police Department will accept responsibility for the misconduct of these officers. Mesa must take concrete steps to ensure that culpable officers are disciplined, retrained, or dismissed.” Johnson’s attorneys will hold a press conference this Thursday.
Watch the disturbing video below: