A Baytown police officer who has drawn complaints over his conduct in the past is being investigated after a viral video emerged showing him getting physical with a man outside a convenience store.
The incident happened Tuesday in the parking lot of the Baytown Market Convenience Store in the 2900 block of Market Street. Officers pulled over Jostin Moore, 23, for unspecified traffic violations and an outstanding warrant from Deer Park.
Moore’s friends, Skylar Gilmore, 24, and Isaiah Phillips, 23, were in a different car when Moore was stopped. They pulled over in the store’s parking lot while the officers searched Moore’s car.
During the course of Moore’s arrest, Baytwon police officials said Gilmore and Phillips began using profanities from a distance.
In a statement, the Baytown Police Department said the incident was referred by the police chief to its Internal Affairs Division to “conduct a complete and thorough review of the incident.”
In the video, which was taken by another friend of Moore’s, Officer Nathaniel Brown can be seen crossing the parking lot to the store’s front and approaching Gilmore, who is on the phone. Brown is then seen throwing Gilmore on the ground, ripping his shirt off, and kneeing him in the head.
A second officer confronts Phillips, who was also in front of the store. After Brown handcuffs Gilmore, he approaches Phillips and slams his head on the hood of Gilmore’s truck, eventually arresting him.
“They told me to calm down, my friend told me to calm down and step back, so I stepped back by Skylar’s truck,” Phillips recounted in a phone interview Wednesday. “Officer Brown came up to me with handcuffs and he slammed me onto Skylar’s vehicile and left a dent.”
Both Gilmore and Phillips were charged with disorderly conduct for using foul language. The Harris County District Attorney’s Office also charged Gilmore with interfering with public duties.
NEWS IN YOUR INBOX: Sign up for breaking news email alerts from HoustonChronicle.com here
In a phone interview Wednesday, Gilmore said the officers misunderstood him by confusing his conversation with his friend on the phone as being directed towards them.
“I guess the police thought I was being vulgar towards them and they came to arrest me,” Gilmore said. “I pulled away just a little bit but when I realized what was going on I put both of my hands down, and that’s when Officer Brown proceeded to throw me into the wall.”
Gilmore believes Brown approached him because he overheard him saying to his friend, Dajone Mitchell, on the phone that Brown was the subject of a previous complaint. In January 2019, Ralpheal White filed a complaint with the Baytown Police Department after his encounter with Brown and a police K-9 in January 2019 landed him in the hospital.
In the wake of the Tuesday incident, Gilmore and Phillips said they planned to file formal complaints with the police department and were also looking into hiring a lawyer and possibly filing a lawsuit against the department.
“We’ve been trying to get the word out today but we are planning on going and filing complaints,” Gilmore said.
Samantha Ketterer contributed to this report.
SUBSCRIBE TODAY: Stay informed with accurate reporting you can trust on HoustonChronicle.com
Credit: Source link