A video showing police officers beating an unconscious suspect, Anthony Warren, had led to the firing of five Birmingham officers. The beating occurred after a high-speed chase. An officer turned off the video camera but it still was able to capture the critical footage.
What is most disturbing is that the video only recently was shown to top police officials despite the fact that any as six supervisors saw the video and apparently did nothing. To the credit of the department, there will be discipline for those supervisors who failed to report the incident to higher-ups. Hopefully, they will at a minimum be stripped of rank and returned to patrol duty as non-supervisors.
There is also the possibility of criminal charges against the officers.
From our past stories, it seems often the case that such brutality occurs after high-speed chases where officers are understandable “pumped up” and often angry. In this case, Warren almost ran over an officer and endangered numerous citizens before his van turned over and he was ejected on the side of the road.
It seems likely that there will be a civil lawsuit. While the actions this week are commendable, the failure of supervisors to act will likely support a tort action against the city and the police.
For the video and full story, click here