IDAHO SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4) — Bodycam video that shows an Idaho Springs police officer tasing a 75-year-old man inside his apartment has been released. Officer Nicholas Hanning was fired and is facing assault charges.
Hanning said Michael Clark was armed with a sword-like weapon and refused to drop it. But newly-released images from Hanning’s body-worn camera show Clark had put down the weapon before he was tased. And Clark’s lawyer claims Hanning also choked, kicked and punched him.READ MORE: Meow Wolf Denver Wants Us To Remember Aug. 3 As Weird Billboards Pop Up
Clark’s lawyer says the assault “caused him heart complications, followed by a stroke, followed by carotid surgery on his neck where he was choked, followed by a burst appendix.”
Hanning’s arrest affidavit was released Tuesday and included images from his bodycam and the camera worn by a second officer.
On the night of May 30, Hanning responded to a report that a man had punched his female neighbor in the face in the 3200 block of Riverside Drive.
According to the affidavit, Hanning first spoke to the alleged victim.
“He was banging on the wall, ‘Shut the **** up!’ and I was literally in here sleeping. So I went out there and knocked on his door. He ******* knocked me in my face,” the woman told police.
Hanning and a second officer went next door to question the neighbor.
In the bodycam video, you see Clark, who was shirtless, open the door. According to the affidavit, he yelled, “What do you want?”
There are a few comments that are unintelligible, then Hanning entered Clark’s apartment and forced him against a wall.
Hanning then shouted, “Put it down, mother******!” and began to back away.
In the bodycam video you can see Clark holding what is described as a “Hawaiian sword.”
A second officer, who was pointing her service weapon at Clark, also yelled at him to drop it. Clark placed the sword on a shelf.
The officers order Clark to come out of the apartment but he refused and complained about the neighbor banging on the wall.READ MORE: 'My Car Went Black': Woman Caught In Mudslide On I-70 Describes Moment Debris Buried Her Car
“I thought they were going to come through the wall,” Clark said.
Without additional warning, Hanning fired his Taser, striking Clark in his abdomen and pelvis area.
Clark fell straight backward, struck a dining room chair, and hit the ground, unconscious.
The whole encounter lasted less than 30 seconds.
Clark was visibly bleeding from a cut above his right eye and Hanning told him, “You’re under arrest right now.”
Clark asked, “What’s going on? I’ve done nothing wrong. What did I do?”
“You punched that girl… then you answered the door with a freaking machete,” Hanning answered.
“I attacked nobody… I was just laying in bed,” Clark stated.
An ambulance arrived and, according to the affidavit, Hanning admitted to a paramedic that he kicked Clark in the knee and punched him “somewhere in the back of the head.”
Clark’s lawyer, Sarah Schielke of The Life & Liberty Law Office, says Clark spent the day of May 30 putting American flags on the graves of fallen soldiers buried at Fort Logan National Cemetery.
“He would end the day tased, tackled, kicked, and choked by Idaho Springs Police officers while he was unarmed and unclothed, inside his own apartment,” Schielke stated.
She said that six weeks after the encounter, Clark remained hospitalized and in poor health.MORE NEWS: Debris, Rising Water Rush Along Black Creek As Flash Flood Warnings Plague Glen Haven, Cameron Peak Fire Burn Area
Hanning faces one charge of third degree assault on an at-risk adult, which is a class 6 felony.