A Bronx man is claiming that he was a victim of police brutality after being stopped last month.
Santiago Hernandez, 23, is shown in the video being punched, kicked and hit with pepper spray after seemingly complying with two NYPD officers’ search. When the two officers approached him as he stood waiting for his friend, Hernandez says he calmly did what they asked and allowed them to search him. Then, when he asked them why he was searched, they reportedly told him it was because of a noise complaint and proceeded to slap handcuffs on him.
"I'm like, 'Miss, what you doing? You are hurting my arm,'" said Hernandez. “She just was telling me to put my hands behind my back, but 'I'm like trying to understand what are you are arresting me for. Can you please tell me?'"
Moments later, half a dozen officers arrive to take control of the scene. They all begin to punch and kick the 23-year-old as he is dragged along the sidewalk to a patrol car.
“They was taking turns on me,” said Hernandez. “One kicks me, he steps back. Another one comes to punch me and he steps back. And another one comes and grabs my arm and hits me like 10 times with the baton. Another one comes and pepper sprayed me, they were taking turns like a gang.”
Hernandez was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. He now has bruises all over his body, and he along with his lawyers has filed a civil complaint.
“Unfortunately, for young men like Santiago, I think this incident is all too common,” said attorney Jay Heinrich.
Hernandez was reportedly asked to put his hands behind his back when the original officers tried to detain him, but he refused, and he explained the reason why to an ABC 7 reporter.
“Because I'm a person to ask questions,” said Hernandez. “If I didn't do nothing wrong, I'm trying to understand the reason, what they are thinking of me, or what was the reason at all to arrest me.”
The incident is currently being investigated.