Inland Empire News

Caught on tape: Cop beats man with baton

Friday, October 23, 2009

A controversy is brewing in San Bernardino after a bystander videotaped police beating a suspect with a baton.

The incident began Monday night when officers pulled over 43-year-old Darren Johnson for what they call several traffic violations. Police said Johnson was in possession of cocaine and became agitated when officers pulled him over. They claim he attacked an officer and had to be subdued.

Brandon Piddington, a reporter online news service Axcess News recorded part of the incident with an iPhone that showed one of the police officers repeatedly hitting Johnson with a baton while another officer holds him down.

"My first reaction was to not film it," he said.

But Piddington quickly changed his mind and pulled out his iPhone.

"This guy was really getting hammered on, and I thought it was wrong."

On the tape, bystanders can be heard saying, "That's too much," and "That's enough."

The San Bernardino Police Department said the incident is under investigation.

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