75-Year-Old Protester Shoved, Knocked Unconscious by Buffalo Police (+Video)
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A horrifying video shows an elderly US protester being shoved to the ground by officers in Buffalo, US state of New York, as they moved in to clear the area after the curfew.
The man could be seen lying motionless while bleeding from his ear.
The graphic footage shows police officers swarming the area in front of City Hall in Buffalo right after its 8 p.m. curfew went into effect on Thursday. As police advance on protesters, a man with what looks like a smartphone in his hand approaches the officers leading the procession in an attempt to confront them, RT reported.
It’s unclear from the video what the man tells the policemen, clad in full riot gear, but the face-off did not last long before he is forcefully pushed by the officers, losing his balance and falling back-first onto the pavement. A trickle of blood could be seen flowing from his ear after the fall. As police call medics to the scene, the man appears to be unconscious, lying motionlessly in the same spot.
The video has spread like wildfire on social media, with many accusing police of an excessive use of force on the man, who did not appear to be threatening any of the officers in the first place.
The police department’s version of events – claiming the man simply “tripped and fell” on his own, according to Buffalo Toronto Public Media – turned out to be strikingly different from what can be seen on the footage and has only further fueled the outrage.
The protester was later taken by ambulance to hospital and is currently in stable condition after suffering what is being described as a “serious” injury to the head.
A total of five people were arrested for “disorderly conduct” as police broke up the Black Lives Matter protest in the area.
As the video went viral, drawing angry comments from netizens and calls to hold the officers involved accountable, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown released a statement, saying that the two policemen “knocked down a 75-year-old man,” contradicting the police's account.
Brown said that he was “deeply disturbed” by the police conduct, and that the officers in the video had been “suspended without pay.”
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo joined the chorus on condemnations, calling the incident “wholly unjustified and utterly disgraceful.” He added that the officers should remain suspended until a formal investigation is carried out.