Two of the officers kicked Elvarado four times before he seemingly complied with handcuffing orders. It's what happened after Elvarado was finally handcuffed that prompted an investigation.
Elvarado was face down when the officer stomped him in the back of the head. After viewing the Chopper 13 exclusive video, Sgt. Mount said, "He's only pushing the head; he stated he's only pushing the head so that he would not have that possibility of body fluid exchanges."
Let's be clear that the video is taken from the air and is not real clear. The police interpreted his movements to suggest he might have been reaching for a weapon. The exaggeration by the media of how to interpret these videos is often unfair to the apprehending police officers. UPDATE: Channel 13 has now edited its video footage to focus on one police officer using his foot to force the fleeing suspect's head down as he is being hancuffed. The officer claims the suspect was trying to spit. Channel 13 is also re-running old video footage of Officer Adam Chappell's arrest of a 17-year-old during Black Expo last year. The prosecutor's office in his case over-reacted after hyped up media coverage by charging him with a more serious charge before striking a deal with him many months later, which allowed him to keep his job. According to an online Star report, a member of Indianapolis' clergy is already drawing conclusions about today's arrest caught on tape. Vic Ryckaert reports:
Justified or not, a local pastor says the videotape of police kicking a suspect during an arrest early Tuesday is likely to damage the department’s efforts to improve relations between officers and a wary community.
“You’re asking the community to support people who are doing that,” said the Rev. David W. Greene of Second Baptist Church on the Northside. “That’s not going to happen.”
Greene noted that many inner-city residents, especially blacks, have a deep distrust for police despite department efforts to build bridges within the community.
The videotaped arrest will only widen the gap and hamper the department’s community policing efforts, Greene said.“People don’t trust the police,” Greene said.