A Colorado police officer is facing felony charges after body cam footage captured him using his pistol to beat a man he was attempting to arrest.
NBC News reports two Aurora Police Department officers are under investigation for an incident that took place last Friday. In body camera footage released at a news conference Tuesday, Officer John Haubert is seen pistol-whipping and choking Kyle Vinson, while a second officer, Francine Martinez, stands nearby.
Vinson repeatedly says “You’re killing me, bro,” as Haubert holds him down and strikes him several times in the head with his weapon and with his hands, before attempting to strangle him.
“If you move, I will shoot you,” Haubert says. Haubert can be heard telling Vinson to “Stop fighting,” as he cries and gasps for air.
Vinson reportedly suffered 13 blows to the head, requiring six stitches. He had a CT scan and doctors believe he will recover fully from the injuries.
Aurora Police Chief Vanessa Wilson called the arrest a “very despicable act” at a press conference on Tuesday.
“This video will shock your conscience. It is very disturbing,” said Wilson, who took over the department last year. “We’re disgusted. We’re angry. This is not police work. We don’t train this.”
Wilson said that Vinson was arrested for an outstanding warrant from Denver County, but that he may have been unaware that it existed when he was stopped.
Haubert is under investigation over possible attempted first-degree assault, second-degree assault and felony menacing in connection with the Friday incident, according to arrest warrant affidavits written by an Aurora police detective and obtained by the Denver Post.
Meanwhile, Officer Martinez faces charges over allegedly not intervening to try to stop Haubert’s purported use of force, the documents say. A new Colorado police accountability law requires law enforcement to intervene when they witness abuses of force.
Haubert and Martinez were booked in jail, but have bonded out. They are both on leave.