Woman with “clenched fists” is beat by officer for “appearing willing to fight”
August 7, 2013
Recently released footage of a male police officer was caught on a department store’s security camera beating a woman after she was apprehended for stealing clothing.
The video forwarded from the Iowa department store, Von Maur, shows Police Officer Scott Crow beating 34-year old Brandie Redell and knocking her to the ground in front of her infant daughter.
“I was crying and begging him to get off me,” said Redell.
“He lunged at me, he came at me. I fell from the chair a little bit and went to the ground face first and he was rubbing my face in the carpet telling me, â€˜This is not going to happen like this, I’m in charge here,’” reported KWQC.
The beaten woman was left with an eye injury that has permanently left her vision impaired.
The Better Government Association (BGA) reports that the police were called after Redell was caught on camera stealing over $300 worth of clothing.
While being questioned inside the store’s interview room, the tape shows Redell being “knocked to the floor” as the officer “rained numerous blows to her face and head.”
Reason.com reports that Redell called her boyfriend asking him to pick up their daughter, when the officer heard Redell’s boyfriends’ name, he told Redell, “This is going to get ugly quick.”
Redell’s boyfriend, James Gibson, is a “community activist who had some some sensitivity training with the department when it comes to race and officers dealing with the public,” according to Reason.
Davenport, Iowa Police Chief Frank Donchez arrived on the force in 2008 after leaving his position as the police commissioner for the Bethlehem, Pa. police department. His departure followed in the wake of a large federal lawsuit against the department for allegations of excessive force used by its officers.
Bethlehem Mayor John Callahan said Donchez dealt with some difficult issues at his past job, but “managed them with a steady head.”
After Donchez viewed the video of Crow beating the woman, he disciplined the officer for excessive force, however the details of the officer’s punishment are unknown.
The BGA reported that Crow is still employed and earning a healthy $65,580 a year.
While the video does not show Redell attacking the officer, Crow’s version of the events differs.
According to a public records report, Crow defends his actions by claiming the woman had “clenched fists,” and appeared “willing to fight.”
Crow says after the woman hit the ground, she began biting his finger and “would not let up,” which he claims is the reason he beat her in the head.
According to the report obtained by the BGA, Redell admits to biting Crow after he tackled her, however, the video shows Crow “striking Redell with both fists” indicating there was no way his finger was between clenched teeth.
The second officer in the video did not incur any repercussions.
Redell filed a complaint against the Davenport police, “alleging Crow used excessive force.”
In a letter dated April 3, Donchez wrote that her complaint was “sustained,” but failed to specify the officer’s punishment.
Michael Walton, the Scott County Iowa prosecutor, refused to press charges against Crow, justifying his decision remarking, “I don’t think the video disputes Crow’s claim that he hit Redell because she bit him.”
The executive director of Northwestern University Center for Public Safety counters the prosecutors’ stance pointing out, “At some point his hand is free [from her mouth] and he continued to pummel her.”
“He went overboard,” said the director.
Public records reveal that Redell was charged with two misdemeanors: assault causing injury to a peace officer and shoplifting.
Redell plead guilty to shoplifting, but the assault charge was later dropped, according to public records.