A shocking video shows the aftermath of an alleged attack where a double amputee got “maced” by Ohio police.
Sunday on Twitter, social media user Laurenn McCubbin said her husband went to a protest in downtown Columbus and allegedly saw cops “hit & mace” the man, and then proceed to “steal his prosthetic legs.”
“This kid, who was doing nothing but exercising his 1st amendment rights, was knocked over, maced, and had to flee from the cops ON HIS HANDS, to find medical help,” McCubbin added.
According to McCubbin, protesters begged authorities for the man’s legs back, but they allegedly refused. When demonstrators rushed the cops — and got maced in the process — they were able to get the legs back.
In the video, Good Samaritans tend to the injured man and try to clean his eyes with water.
“Medic! Medic!” one bystander exclaimed in an attempt to get the man proper medical care.
Today in Columbus my husband was downtown at the protests & saw the cops hit & mace an unarmed kid and then STEAL HIS PROSTHETIC LEGS. https://t.co/4DRO4CS78v— Laurenn McCubbin (@laurennmcc) June 22, 2020
According to journalist Eric Halperin of NBC4, the Columbus demonstrations were initially peaceful until a protester allegedly threw a rental scooter at police.
Columbus Police Sgt. James Fuqua says officers attempted to take that protester into custody, but other demonstrators allegedly physically tried to restrain the officers from arresting the suspect.
Fuqua said pepper spray was deployed, but only after officers showed “maximum restraint.”
Cops were also seen on video pushing protesters off the street with their bikes.
While Fuqua acknowledges that many protesters obeyed the police’s request to stay on the sidewalks, he says many did not, and went back into the streets and grabbed officers’ bicycles.
“They came with a clear agenda to make sure we would not be able to keep the street clear for everyone’s safety,” Fuqua added.
Though Columbus Mayor Andrew J. Ginther issued an order on June 16 banning tear gas and limiting the use of pepper spray against demonstrators, he appeared to justify the actions of the police, saying Sunday on Twitter that officers “were met with violence from some and took action.”
We have been clear about respecting and protecting peaceful protest. We also must keep city streets open to the public to travel and protect residents from lawlessness including the drag racing, fires and injuries in recent nights.— Mayor Andrew Ginther (@MayorGinther) June 21, 2020
Increased enforcement today has been necessary to clear the right of way. Officers instructed people downtown to keep protests to the sidewalks and out of streets for more than an hour.— Mayor Andrew Ginther (@MayorGinther) June 21, 2020
As police tried to clear streets, they were met with violence from some and took action, including using mace and pepper spray as appropriate to keep crowds in sidewalks.— Mayor Andrew Ginther (@MayorGinther) June 21, 2020
I will reiterate again that we respect and encourage peaceful protest, but aggressive acts that put police and protesters in danger cannot be tolerated.— Mayor Andrew Ginther (@MayorGinther) June 21, 2020
However, on Monday, Ginther responded to the video of the injured amputee, saying he and his team are “taking the matter very seriously and working diligently to find video, photos, and additional information.”
I have seen the video and photo of the disabled man downtown last night. We are taking the matter very seriously and working diligently to find video, photos and additional information.— Mayor Andrew Ginther (@MayorGinther) June 22, 2020
Anyone with first-hand accounts, video or photos should send them to reportCPD@columbus.gov. We will fully investigate.— Mayor Andrew Ginther (@MayorGinther) June 22, 2020
Ginther also encourages protesters to report any incidents where they believe “police acted inappropriately.”
If you were at the protest and believe police acted inappropriately, I encourage you to send photos, videos and complaints to reportCPD@columbus.gov.— Mayor Andrew Ginther (@MayorGinther) June 22, 2020