Five Miami Beach police officers have been charged in the violent arrest of a man and the person who filmed the attack.
Miami Beach Police Sgt. Jose Perez and Officers Kevin Perez, Robert Sabater, David Rivas and Steven Serrano have all been charged with one count of battery, which is a first-degree misdemeanor, Miami-Dade County State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle (D) said Monday.
The incident occurred in the early morning of July 26. Dalonta Crudup, 24, allegedly had an encounter with a bicycled Miami Beach officer, which left the officer with leg injuries requiring hospitalization.
Crudup then fled to the Royal Palms Hotel and into the elevator. Police Lt. Jose Reina chased Crudup into the hotel elevator, stopping him at gunpoint.
Crudup left the elevator with his hands raised. As Reina began to arrest Crudup, approximately 21 other officers arrived on the scene to assist.
“It is at this point the situation begins to change, in our opinion, from the legitimate arrest of a criminal suspect into an ongoing investigation into the use of force by five Miami Beach police officers leading to their being criminally charged today,” Rundle said.
Video of the incident shows the other officers swarming Reina and Crudup as he’s being arrested. Officers can be seen kicking Crudup and one can be seen head-slamming him.
The majority of officers then disperse but four officers are still kicking him.
Rundle then showed video of Kahlid Vaughn, who she said was standing about 12 to 15 feet away from where the arrest was taking place. Vaughn appears to be filming “without incident” when Sabater confronts him.
Rundle said its believed Sabater said “back up” before Vaughn took about four steps back. Sabater then tackles Vaughn and pins him against a column.
Rivas and Serrano are then seen punching Vaughn repeatedly until he is brought to the ground.
Crudup was charged with aggravated battery on a law enforcement officer, according to The Associated Press. Vaughn was charged with resisting arrest with violence and impeding a police investigation, both of which were dropped.