A videotape showing a police officer using a flashlight to hit a suspect during a June 19 incident was “brutal” but appears to be within protocol, says Los Angeles Police Chief William Bratton. The Los Angeles Times says Bratton addressed the issue a day after a television station broadcast a home video of the incident, which occurred four days before an officer was videotaped striking car-theft suspect Stanley Miller 11 times with a flashlight. The other video shows Curtis Gibson, 37, being struck three times in the legs with a flashlight by police during the struggle to arrest him at an apartment complex. Bratton said this case was different because Gibson threw a bottle at an officer and injured him. During the scuffle to take him into custody, Gibson also reached for an officer’s gun.
Bratton described the struggle involving Gibson as “graphic,” “violent,” and “confusing.” “I wish that everyone would just give up when we arrest them,” he said, “but the truth is that policing is not pretty.” The arrest was the culmination of a police chase through an unruly party attended by residents and probably some gang members.