DETROIT – A Detroit police officer, who was caught on camera punching a man in Greektown, has been suspended.
In a press conference, 37-year-old Marcus Alston, Antjuan Hardy and Hardy’s brother, 34-year-old Antonio Hardy, said the incident was more complicated than the video, which has since gone viral.
“Most of it I didn’t remember. I don’t even remember being punched,” Alston said.
Alston was knocked to the ground minutes before Antjuan and Antonio Hardy said they tried to step in to another fight between police and several people leaving a nearby club. When they said they tried to find out what was going on, they were punched, arrested and ticketed. Alston was never ticketed or arrested despite Detroit Police Department protocol.
“I’m furious ... and the craziest part about it, I thought he was overreacting. I never knew he got punched,” said Antjuan Hardy.
In a meeting Thursday for police commissioners, Interim Police Chief James White said the officer seen punching Alston is suspended.
“This incident is unacceptable and it gives me great concern and it erodes the work that these men and women do on a day-in-day-out basis,” White said.
The men suffered serious injures, putting them in back and leg braces, wincing as they moved. The men said they are worried about more than physical harm done.
“That type of stuff should not happen to nobody. You don’t know the type of stress I’m going through. How many of my kids, children I’ve coached that have seen this video. And now you don’t know what’s going through their minds like ‘look what happened to Coach Marcus, that could happen to me one day,’” Alston said.
White said supervising police officers who were there at the time of the incident are also being looked at as part of an internal investigation.