An officer was captured on video assaulting a woman on Interstate 10 in Los Angeles. The California Highway Patrol said it will conduct an investigation and the woman, a great-grandmother, was in danger of being struck by traffic. The victim did not sustain any physical injuries, authorities said.
The patrol vowed to investigate at a press conference Saturday after the video emerged of the officer pinning a woman to the ground and striking her repeatedly in the head on a Los Angeles interstate Tuesday.
"He punched and pound and pound on her, the only thing she could do was block her face," Mayisha Adams, the daughter of the victim Marleen Pinnock told TV Station ABC7 in Los Angeles.
The family and their attorney Caree Harper have declined to speak on the details of the incident stating instead the attention should be on the actions of the officer.
"We want the focus to be what he was doing to her, not what she was doing" Harper said. "She was getting beat like an animal. No one should ever be beat like that."
The unidentified officer is on administrative leave during the investigation.
CHP Assistant Chief Chris O'Quinn said the incident report listed no injuries for the woman, who is undergoing psychiatric evaluation. He declined to comment on what prompted the officer's actions, but said the officers have a large concerns for pedestrians on the freeway.
"The most dangerous thing that we face is traffic," O'Quinn said.
She was getting beat like an animal. No one should ever be beat like that.
But David Diaz, who recorded the video, said the victim as walking off the freeway and turned back onto the roadway when the officer spoke to her.
"He agitated the situation more than helped it," said Diaz, who started filming soon after.
The video has also caused outrage among civil rights group for how the woman appears to have been treated.
"Speaking for the women of this community, we are angry, we are upset," said Lita Herron of the Youth Advocacy Coalition.
"We are known as an agency that really polices itself," O'Quinn said.
Community activist Earl Ofari Hutchinson said she was very surprised by the officer's actions.
"Over the years, CHP has had a very good track record in terms of community relations," Hutchinson said. "That's why this was so shocking."
With News Wire Services