Police: Video Of Officer’s Takedown Of Woman Doesn’t Tell Whole Story

By Tom Mustin

FORT COLLINS, Colo. (CBS4) – It’s the cellphone video that has caused a social media firestorm.

“Regardless of what she’s doing, no one should be thrown face-first into the ground, ” one resident told CBS4’s Tom Mustin.

“I don’t want to make a judgement until I know all the information,” said resident Jason Pocalyko.

woman outside bar thrown down 6vo Police: Video Of Officers Takedown Of Woman Doesnt Tell Whole Story

(credit: CBS)

Fort Collins Police Services says the video showing a female Colorado State University student being slammed to the ground is misleading. They told Mustin they believe the officer’s body cam video will tell a much different story.

The incident took place Thursday night at the Bondi Beach Bar and Grill. Since being posted, it’s been viewed nearly 770,000 times.

The video shows a Fort Collins police officer violently throwing Michaela Surat, 22, to the ground in Old Town.

woman outside bar thrown dow567n 6vo Police: Video Of Officers Takedown Of Woman Doesnt Tell Whole Story

(credit: CBS)

Kelly Simmons and Courtney Dean told Mustin they were inside the Bondi Beach Bar and watched the altercation unfold.

“He probably could have handled it differently, the officer. She was very small. Like thin,” said Dean.

Police say they had been breaking up a fight involving Surat’s boyfriend when she “shoulder slammed” the officer. After being asked to leave, Surat allegedly struck the officer. Police say that’s when she was thrown to the ground, arrested and later charged with assault.

Simmons says she believes the officer went overboard.

bar patron thrown 5pkg Police: Video Of Officers Takedown Of Woman Doesnt Tell Whole Story

(credit: CBS)

“She’s so small. He could have easily just grabbed her arms and handcuffed her or gently pushed her up against the wall and handcuffed her. Anything other than face-slamming a girl into the ground,” she told Mustin.

Police Chief John Hutto released a statement saying the cellphone video does not show the whole story. Protocal was followed and the body cam video will eventually be released. Resident Meredith Wilson says until that happens, it’s too early to pass judgement.

“You definitely need to know the story behind why the cops were talking to her, why they were called and were actually there. Not just this nine-second clip,” she said.

Surat’s attorney said his client suffered a concussion in the incident and doesn’t believe the use of force by the officer was warranted.

Police say the officer’s body cam video will be released when the investigation is complete. There’s no word yet on when that will be.

Tom Mustin is CBS4’s Weekend Anchor. He has been with CBS4 since 2002, and is always looking for great story ideas. Connect with Tom on Facebook or follow him on Twitter @TomCBS4.

Comments

One Comment

  1. Teddy Sweaty says:

    That’s what happens when someone that has mental issues is given a badge, a gun, and a false sense of heroism. They lash out and attack the things and people that they never had a chance with as a citizen.

    1. Most Major Police Departments expect new recruits to have a four year Criminal Justice Degree, which weeds out many people who can’t be trusted with a badge, since they lack the ability & determination to complete a college degree.
      Part of the process of being interviewed, which can too strict, or not strict enough. For some departments will avoid recruits with an IQ of over 120, or who admitted to having tried weed. And some departments will hire whom ever is willing, if they don’t have any felonies.
      So the question is “why was she handed violently”, and “is the officer in question prone to violence” ??? As that much force would be justified, if she tried to grab his gun, but not justified if she was just being a difficult drunk.

      1. Teddy Sweaty says:

        I’ve never heard of a police department requiring a four year criminal justice degree. The college in my hometown pumps them out in 16 weeks. That is the problem, they hire people to stupid to get through a real college.

  2. Fred Flint says:

    Better hurry up with police cam as a Larimer county resident the police probably do not want me on a jury. Even if the 100 lb girl “shoulder slammed” him I doubt seriously she budged him an inch. Pulling back or trying not to get arrested is the act of a drunk not assault or resisting arrest.

    I sure the cops feared she was going to escape in her high heals and mini skirt.

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