(Reuters) – A Chicago police officer was suspended this week after video recorded by a bystander showed him hurling a man forcefully onto the sidewalk during an arrest, in footage described by Mayor Lori Lightfoot as “highly disturbing.”
The incident took place on Thursday, the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday, when police approached a 29-year-old man drinking alcohol in the afternoon at a bus stop on Chicago’s South Side, CBS News reported. Police said the man became agitated, threatened an officer and spat on his face, leading to the body slam filmed by a passerby, the report said.
After landing on the sidewalk, the man did not appear to move for the remainder of the short video.
“While a single video does not depict the entirety of the interactions between the police and the individual, this particular video is very disturbing,” Lightfoot wrote in a post on Twitter.
The Civilian Office of Police Accountability, a city oversight body, was investigating, she said.
The oversight body asked that the officer be stripped of his police powers, and the police department agreed, police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said in a statement.
He called the move an “emergency takedown,” but said the department was taking complaints from the public seriously.
“If wrongdoing is discovered, officers will be held accountable,” his statement said.
The man was treated at a hospital before being released into police custody, CBS reported.
Reporting by Jonathan Allen in New York; Editing by Bernadette Baum