INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – An arrest inside a gas station in Speedway caught on camera last week. Now, the family of the man arrested is raising the question, was this an excessive use of force?
Police are now taking a closer look at that video and we are digging into IMPD’s arrest policies.
The disturbance inside of a Speedway gas station at 10th and Lyndhurst was caught on cell phone camera by a customer.
“It is just excessive force,” said the suspect’s dad Darrel Knox.
The video shows two IMPD officers on the ground trying to restrain Christopher Knox after police say he assaulted a customer and a cop inside of the gas station. Knox now faces disorderly conduct, battery on a police officer and resisting arrest charges.
“With the punches and the knees. Yes sir…they overreacted,” said Knox.
IMPD says their officers tased Knox, then forced him to the ground when he would not comply with their verbal commands and became physically violent.
Knox’s family says he was having a medical emergency and had a seizure the moment before he was arrested. Knox’s dad says his son is on disability.
“When Chris is in his right mind, he is fantastic. He is great, but when he has seizures, he does not know what he is doing his arms go crazy,” said Knox.
IMPD officer and the department’s training academy legal instructor Michael Daley tells us police are trained to de-escalate and protect themselves from someone who is showing aggressive behavior.
“It is very dangerous and these things happen so quickly so that is why we teach the officers that there is a point where the talking has to stop and we have to take action,” said Daley.
Daley could not comment on this case specifically but says IMPD officers are trained to deploy a taser and use different physical restraints to get compliance.
“We teach them techniques where we are pulling on their arms or twisting their arms and giving some pain to them to gain compliance. We also teach some strikes, such as kneeing a person in their leg and their thigh that is a distraction technique,” said Officer Daley.
After seeing the video, Knox’s family thought those restraint tactics were excessive and want to see more training for IMPD officers.
“They are there to serve and protect, not taze and hospitalize and then incarcerate,” said Knox.
IMPD officers spend nearly 200 hours learning about the use of force and the best ways to de-escalate a violent situation. The goal is to protect themselves and the community.
“It is to gain control and compliance of the individual. that is what we are focused on,” said Officer Daley.
Right now, IMPD is working with the prosecutor’s office to review the video and surveillance video from inside the gas station.