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Police release video of Sterling Brown arrest, officers disciplined

By
Daniel Uria
Milwaukee police released video Wednesday of officers arresting and using a stun gun on NBA player Sterling Brown after he was approached for a parking violation outside of a drug store in January. Photo by Keith Allison/Wikimedia Commons
Milwaukee police released video Wednesday of officers arresting and using a stun gun on NBA player Sterling Brown after he was approached for a parking violation outside of a drug store in January. Photo by Keith Allison/Wikimedia Commons

May 23 (UPI) -- Police in Wisconsin released video Wednesday showing police arresting and using a stun gun on Milwaukee Bucks player Sterling Brown.

Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales said officers acted inappropriately in their encounter with Brown and have since been disciplined, although he didn't name the officers or provide detail on the discipline he administered.

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"I am sorry this incident escalated to this level," Morales said.

The video, which features some profane language, shows an officer approaching Brown about a parking violation in a drug store parking lot on Jan. 26.

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The officer asked Brown to present his driver's license and asked why he had parked his car across two handicapped spaces, while placing a hand on Brown as he approached his vehicle. The officer repeatedly asked Brown to back up, as Brown responded by telling the officer not to touch him.

After about a minute, the officer requested an additional squad car and shortly afterward at least five police vehicles arrived at the scene.

The situation escalated further as multiple officers surrounded Brown to question him and at one point an officer shouted at Brown to take his hands out of his pockets.

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"Hold on. I've got stuff in my hands," Brown said.

Officers then closed in to grab Brown and brought him to the ground as one officer shouted "Taser! Taser! Taser!" Brown can be heard yelling in pain as officers shocked him with a stun gun.

Brown was eventually released and didn't face any criminal charges.

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"My experience with the Milwaukee Police Department was wrong and shouldn't happen to anybody," Brown said in a statement Wednesday. "What should have been a simple parking ticket turned into an attempt at police intimidation followed by the unlawful use of physical force, including being handcuffed and tased and then unlawfully booked."

Brown said the experience encouraged him to speak out on behalf of other black men who were killed during encounters with police, including Stephon Clark and Eric Garner.

"The common denominator in all of these situations has been racism towards the minority community, the abuse of power and the lack of accountability for officers involved. The lack of repercussions for the police officers involved in so many of these cases is offensive. This is a slap in the face to the victims' families and communities," Brown said. "Black men shouldn't have to have their guard up and instantly be on the defensive when seeing a police officer, but it's our reality and a real problem. There must be mutual respect and both sides have to figure out how to accomplish this."

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The Milwaukee Bucks also issued a statement on the video, offering Brown full support.

"The abuse and intimidation that Sterling experienced at the hands of Milwaukee Police was shameful and inexcusable," the team said. "Unfortunately, this isn't an isolated case. It shouldn't require an incident involving a professional athlete to draw attention to the fact that vulnerable people in our communities have experienced similar, and even worse, treatment."

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