SPD officer placed on leave after video shows him rolling bike over protester’s neck
A Seattle police officer has been placed on administrative leave pending a potential criminal investigation by the King County Sheriff’s Office, after video from a Wednesday night protest showed a police officer rolling a bicycle over a man’s neck as he laid on the ground.
The Office of Police Accountability (OPA) called for the criminal investigation early Thursday afternoon, after SPD’s Force Investigation Team for identified “potential violations of SPD policy, as well as potential criminal conduct” upon its own review of video footage.
It happened in the former CHOP zone near Capitol Hill’s East Precinct, during protests over a recent decision by a Kentucky grand jury to indict one of three officers involved in the death of Breonna Taylor for wanton endangerment.
The lawyer for the families of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, Benjamin Crump, commented on the video Thursday, describing it as “more acts of excessive force and brutality from those who should be focused on protecting our citizens.”
The person shooting the video says there were about 60 officers and 300 protesters at the scene. Several bike officers in the video move forward, and one appears to run both of the wheels of his bicycle directly over a man laying prone.
The organization Rise Up identified the person on the ground as “Trumpet Man.” Rise Up says the officer wheeled the bike over his windpipe, then arrested him.
The organization also noted that “Trumpet Man” became a prominent member of the Seattle and Portland protest scenes by playing the trumpet at marches dating back to early June.
The Seattle Police Department said early Thursday it was made aware of the video. The SPD made a total of 13 arrests Wednesday for a range of charges, including property destruction, resisting arrest, failure to disperse, and assault on an officer.