The man had surrendered and two Los Angeles police officers were holding him down and a third cop had just re-holstered his gun when a fourth LAPD cop came running up and kicked the suspect in the head – who turned out to be innocent.
Los Angeles police officer Richard Garcia then kneed the man in the back, following that with a punch to the head, then several elbows.
Even after the other two officers stepped off the handcuffed suspect, Garcia kept his knee planted on the man’s back and at times his head.
The incident, which took place in October 2014, was captured on a surveillance video, resulting in felony assault charges filed against the LAPD cop.
But even after Garcia agreed to a plea deal in May 2015 where he served no jail time, police and prosecutors refused to release the video.
Garcia faced up to three years in jail if convicted of the felony assault charge. Earlier this year, prosecutors quietly agreed to a deal that allowed him to plead no contest and avoid jail time if he completes community service, follows all laws, stays away from Alford and donates $500 to a charity by late May 2017.
Under the agreement, Garcia, 35, would be allowed to enter a new plea to a misdemeanor charge that would replace the felony and would be placed on two years of probation. If he violates the plea terms, the felony will stand and he will be placed on three years of probation. If he doesn’t appear in court for the 2017 hearing, he could be sentenced to jail.
But Garcia is still a cop, even if he is a cop on probation.
And Clinton Alford, the man who was kicked and has filed a lawsuit against the city over the arrest.
On October 16, 2014, Alford, 22, was riding his bicycle when an unmarked car pulled up to him and a man inside yelled at him to stop.
After a short foot chase, he apparently realized they were cops and gave up, lying down in the street as the cops ran up and handcuffed him.
That was when Garcia pulled up in his patrol car and ran out, kicking, punching and elbowing him as he was facedown on the ground already handcuffed, leaving him with a gash on his ear that required stitches at a hospital.
He was charged with drug possession and resisting arrest, although he insisted he never had drugs and it was never made clear what kind of drugs they found on him.
However, his attorney said police continued to harass him after the incident and he now is in jail on other charges, including rape, pimping and assault with a deadly weapon, but the Los Angeles Times offers no details on those charges.