NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The NYPD is investigating after video appears to show an officer with his knee on a man’s neck during an arrest.
Cell phone video taken in Jamaica, Queens, shows NYPD officers arresting 34-year-old Carlyle Arnold on Sutphin Boulevard on Saturday night. One officer appears to have his knee on the back of Arnold’s neck.
“I was just trying to be still so it could go by faster,” Arnold told CBS2’s Ali Bauman.
Arnold says he was riding his ATV around the neighborhood with about 50 other friends at the time. “The officers wanted him to stop, so they tapped on his ATV, cornered him, kind of blocked him in with the cars, so he stops and immediately kind of stumbles off from them tapping. And as he stumbles off the ATV and goes to fall, they tackle him,” said Olayemi Olurim, Arnold’s attorney.
After at least a minute on the ground, Arnold says officers allowed him to stand up and took him over to the squad car, arresting him for reckless endangerment and leaving him with a sore neck and bloodied knees. “I was just riding my bike. I wasn’t really trying to hurt no one,” Arnold said.
Last year amid police reform protests, the city council passed a law criminalizing chokeholds by officers as a method to subdue someone. The law was later amended to clarify it is illegal for officers to “recklessly” compress a suspect’s diaphragm while making an arrest. “His knee is not supposed to be on my client’s neck. He’s not resisting. He’s not fighting them,” Olurim said.
Arnold and the Legal Aid Society, which is representing him, want the officers involved to be fired and face criminal charges.
“Look at your knee. Look at your knee. It’s the only thing I can say,” Arnold said.
An NYPD spokesperson told CBS2 that the department is aware of the incident and it’s under internal review.
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