Police union says video of officer beating woman doesn't tell wh - CBS46 News

Police union says video of officer beating woman doesn't tell whole story

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(Source: YouTube) (Source: YouTube)

A spokesperson with the DeKalb Fraternal Order of Police says viral video of a DeKalb County police officer beating a woman inside a store doesn't tell the whole story.

Highly acclaimed Officer P.J. Larscheid is seen striking a homeless woman with his baton more than a dozen times during an arrest in June.

The homeless woman, Katie McCrary, is accused of begging for money at a convenience store in Decatur.

(MORE: DeKalb County police face investigation after viral video shows officer beating homeless woman)

“We have a split second to make a decision that is sometimes life changing,” Wiggs said. “I can tell you from my experience that some of the arrests that were tough for me personally were obviously with females because when they’re small, they can put up a fight.”

So CBS46 wanted to know if police officers have become more aware of their actions now that cameras tend to capture incidents like this more often.

“I don’t think the officers are really policing any differently. Obviously they’re aware that there are more cameras out nowadays, but policing has been the same for years,” Wiggs said.

Law enforcement analyst Vincent Hill shares a similar view point.

“I don’t think a camera is going to change that because the second police start worrying about being watched is a second they could end up hurt or killed,” Hill said. 

Both men agree a thorough investigation into the incident is warranted, but it’s too soon to rush to judgment.

“Some people may see that as resisting in the heat of the moment, but you also have to think, if I’m hitting you with a piece of metal, your natural instinct is to try to get out of the way because it hurts, right? So that officer may have seen it as resisting, where she may have seen it as this hurts. I need to protect myself and I think that’s what happened,” Hill said.

(MORE: Resisting arrest or self defense?)

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is currently investigating the incident. Officer Larscheid remains on administrative duty pending the outcome.

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