Activists called Friday's indictment a 'half step' rather than what they wanted.
Christopher Pate, 37, said he was approached by officers in an unmarked vehicle at Fulton Avenue and Bloss Street around 4:45 p.m. on May 5. Officers claimed that Pate matched the description of an individual on their "most wanted" board.
Pate said that after he provided his identification and proved he wasn't the person they were seeking, the officers continued to escalate the situation and initiated a physical confrontation.
According to Pate, the officers tased and handcuffed him then punched him repeatedly, breaking bones in his face.
“I saw the officer on top of him, beating him," said Tina Davis, who saw the incident happening right outside her front door on Fulton Avenue, near Bloss Street. "The guy was yelling and asking him why are they beating him, because he wasn’t resisting or anything, because he wasn’t. From that point on, they took him down to the ground and was on top of him and being real aggressive.” [MORE]
During a press conference after the incident, the chief and mayor said, after reviewing the body-worn camera footage, they believe the purported actions of the officers rises to the level of possible criminal charges.
Reverend Lewis Stewart, the president of the United Christian Leadership Ministry, says he spoke with Christopher Pate on Friday following the DA's announcement.
Stewart says Pate and his supporters feel let down that both officers were not charged with felony assault. Stewart is still demanding that body camera video of the incident be made public.
He is also blaming the decision by the grand jury on bias.
"In fact, most people will say 'well we have to respect the decision of grand juries.' I don't because sometimes grand juries are ignorant and stupid," exclaimed Rev. Stewart. "...and they were ignorant and stupid in this case. And Sandra Doorley should have given more direction and instruction to the grand jury and the jurors in terms of the fact that this is the outcome that she's seeking and she did not do so."
Stewart says he's waiting for the results of the police internal investigation.