Witnesses claim Tucson cops started violence; Police “were all dressed up for a riot and had no riot to go to”
March 31, 2014
March 31, 2014
Videos uploaded to YouTube over the weekend show cops in Arizona intentionally inciting violence following a basketball game Saturday night by firing pepper rounds into crowds of students and attacking innocent bystanders
After the Arizona Wildcats men’s basketball team lost in overtime to the Wisconsin Badgers, students poured out of bars onto the streets of Tucson to find close to a hundred militarized cops dressed in riot gear and weilding batons.
The police were deployed, according to officials, in order to prevent damage to property from alcohol fueled sports fans. The situation quickly broke down into a violent stand off.
While police claim that students began to throw smoke bombs and other projectiles, The Arizona Daily Independent reports that this only started to happen after cops were unnecessarily aggressive toward a couple of people who were caught up in the crowd.
The following video captures one of those incidents, showing a female student simply walking through the crowd and getting brutally knocked down by a riot cop for absolutely no reason.
The video shows the cop running into the girl, who is half her size and knocking her clear off her feet. The woman is lucky that her head did not smash into the concrete floor, and that a park bench broke the fall. Clearly shaken up and having to be comforted by other students, she was extremely lucky to walk away from the incident at all.
Tyler Charles, a student who saw the incident told reporters “The girl walked passed me and she had her drink in her hand. I don’t know if it had alcohol in it or not… But she literally walked pass me and the officer just rammed her and all of us guys around lost our shit.”
Phoebe Landolt, the student who filmed the incident said “I came later and I was told that 3 girls were trying to get to their car off of university (boulevard) and with no warning this girl was knocked over by the cop. Watching the video and seeing the scene in person I understand the purpose behind crowd control in a situation like that but what that officer did was completely unwarranted.”
The Tucson police department says it is “reviewing the video”.