Want the best of VICE News straight to your inbox? Sign up here.
A Dallas cop was caught on video at a local bar shoving a man into a metal lamp pole and punching him repeatedly in the face while he was on the ground.
The uniformed officer was off-duty and typically assigned to the SWAT team, according to local ABC affiliate WFAA-8.
The video, which has amassed more than 26,000 views across social media platforms like Youtube and Twitter, shows a chaotic scene in front of a business in Dallas’ Deep Ellum area. Four officers with the Dallas Police Department are seen trying to break up what appears to be about a dozen people fighting. At one point, the officer who’s reportedly an off-duty SWAT team member pulls away from the crowd and appears to assault a man in a white T-shirt before being stopped by two of his colleagues.
The department has told VICE News that the unidentified officer has since been placed on administrative leave, and the department has launched administrative and criminal investigations. He already has two other pending use of force investigations against him, according to WFAA 8.
At the start of the near minute and a half long video, people can be seen on the ground as others are throwing punches at each other. Three officers are on the scene, attempting to break up the brawl. As two of the officers check up on two individuals sitting on the ground, a man in a white T-shirt approaches the group from off screen. The third cop, who was reportedly off-duty, then tells the man to back up two before pushing him back.
“Get out of the street,” that officer says as the person recording gets in their car.
“Fuck you,” the man can be heard responding and the person filming rolls down their window.
The next few seconds of their interaction are obscured, but a crowd can be heard gasping. When the camera refocuses on the man in the white T-shirt, the officer reportedly off-duty is seen shoving the man into a nearby lamp pole. After the man crumples to the ground, the cop then stands over him and throws six punches to the man’s face. Two other officers run over to intervene, before restraining the man on the ground and placing him under arrest.
Dallas Police Department Chief Edgardo Garcia “commended those officers who recognized their duty to intervene in this incident and deescalate the situation,” according to a statement from the department.
A spokesperson for the department told VICE News that information regarding what happened between the officer and the man as well as what caused the brawl in front of the bar is limited as the investigation is still active.