SAN JOSE (KPIX 5) – After video of a violent arrest in San Jose last weekend went viral, police in San Jose admitted the video is tough to watch, but defended the use of force on the suspect.
The video showing a man on the ground, held down and surrounded by at least 8 San Jose police officers who are trying to handcuff him will be a key piece of evidence in a police internal affairs investigation.READ MORE: Monterey Bay Tour Boats Encountering 'Friendly Whales' That Like to Socialize
But the incident at Story and White Roads in East San Jose Saturday night was also witnessed in person by several people, some of whom have filed misconduct complaints with the Independent Police Auditor’s Office.
“We look at the investigation to see whether or not the department conducted a thorough and complete investigation into the complaint of misconduct,” said independent police auditor LaDoris Cordell.
Police said it started when officers on routine patrol in an area known for drug dealing saw 22-year-old Juan Manuel Moreno Lopez walking, and may have tried to hide something, which somehow aroused their suspicions. Authorities said he first ran, and then confronted officers.
The arrest was called unjust and barbaric by the Mountain View family who recorded and uploaded the video to Facebook, where it was seen over 157,000 times in one day.
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Raj Jayadev with the police watchdog group Silicon Valley Debug called it disturbing.
“You look at this video and it looks eerily similar to videos we’ve seen around the country where the result was a loss of life,” Jayadev told KPIX 5.
The suspect is very much alive. Lopez was treated at a hospital for cuts and scrapes, and then booked into county jail for assaulting an officer, resisting arrest and a drug charge.
On Tuesday, a San Jose police spokesman admitted the video may be tough to watch, but that is police work.
“Anyone who looks at a video where you see multiple officers in a fight with one person, it does look violent. It is what it is,” said Sgt. Enrique Garcia of the San Jose Police Department.
Police said there will be an internal affairs investigation which will look into what was captured on video, but also what camera didn’t see.MORE NEWS: PG&E to Face Criminal Charges Over Deadly Zogg Fire in Shasta County
“The suspect running away, confronting officers, the suspect attacking one of the officer with the bottle, the attack on the officers with a physical fight. That part is not shown on any video that I’ve seen,” Garcia said.