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Columbus Police Launch Internal Investigation After Complaints Over Forceful Arrest

Columbus police officer struggle to subdue Timothy Davis during a September 1 arrest.
Mike Woodson Levey
Columbus police officer struggle to subdue Timothy Davis during a September 1 arrest.

Community activists are demanding an investigation into the arrest of a Columbus man after cellphone video showed officers kicking and punching the man.

Protesters brought their concerns to Columbus City Council Monday where they called for the firing of officers involved in the incident.

At issue was the September 1 arrest of Timothy Davis inside a Columbus convenience store where officers tried to arrest him on a warrant alleging he assaulted an officer last year.

Video appears to show Davis ignoring officers' instructions to put his hands behind his back before officers struggle to subdue him. Video shows officers punching and kicking Davis while yelling profanities.

At one point, Davis' pants and boxers get pulled down as officers wrestle with him. Chief Kim Jacobs said the confrontation lasted between 8-10 minutes before Davis was arrested.

Warning: the below video contains graphic language and nudity. 

Police spokesman Sgt. Dean Worthington said use of force depends on a suspect's behavior and police policy does allow for punching and kicking.

Online court records don't list an attorney for Davis.

People's Justice Project lead organizer Tammy Fournier Alsaada says she wants the city to invest in safe spaces that foster community relationships with police.

"We need answers," Alsaada says. "We asked for an answer in seven days. We'll be back in City Hall next Monday. I have no confidence and my community has no confidence in Chief Kim Jacobs and her police."

In a statement posted late on Tuesday night, Chief Kim Jacobs said the incident resulted in an Internal Affairs investigation after the department received a citizen complaint.

"An investigation of this nature with the number of officers involved is expected to take several weeks before the review of the evidence begins by the involved officers' superiors," Jacbos wrote. "Making judgments based on incomplete or inaccurate information or portions of video is inconsistent with just cause for disciplinary action and thus a thorough investigation is required."

Updated September 13 at 10:55 a.m.

Adora Namigadde was a reporter for 89.7 NPR News. She joined WOSU News in February 2017. A Michigan native, she graduated from Wayne State University with a B.A. in Broadcast Journalism and a minor in French.