Police brutality as a specific form of police misconduct is not limited to beatings or shootings. It is a nightmare for various people in different countries, and the United States is not exempted.
An incident that qualifies as such happened in Florida in November 2021. A fellow officer tried to stop the assailant from assaulting a civilian during an arrest but was also grabbed by the throat.
According to NBC News, Christopher Pullease was charged with assault and battery on a law enforcement officer, tampering with evidence, and assaulting a civilian.
Before this, 47-year-old Pullease had been removed from his supervisor duties at the Sunrise Police Department in January.
According to ABC Local 10 News, he was removed after footage from a body camera showed the sergeant threatening a suspect and allegedly pointing pepper spray at him even when he was already inside a police vehicle.
The footage released by the news outlet showed Pullease saying: "You wanna play f**king games? If you ever get disrespectful with my officers, I will remove your f**king soul from your f**king body."
At this point, a fellow officer grabbed him by the back of his belt and tried to move him from the suspect. Pullease turned around, grabbed her by her neck, and shouted at all officers to "turn their f**king cameras off."
In January, Sunrise Police Chief Anthony Rosa wrote: "Once the suspect was inside the patrol vehicle, the sergeant approached and engaged in a verbal altercation with the suspect in a manner that I feel was inappropriate and unprofessional. This supervisor escalated the encounter instead of de-escalating an emotionally charged situation."
According to NBC News, Rosa commended the officer who tried to pull Pullease away from the situation, saying she did what she was supposed to when there was "imminent fear of engagements escalating unnecessarily."
Now, Pullease will most likely face even more consequences for his actions. On Thursday, in a statement released by the Broward State Attorney's office, Pullease faces a maximum of "five years in state prison for felony battery on a law enforcement officer, one year for assaulting a law enforcement officer, and 60 days for assault on a civilian.
The statement further read: "The sergeant is also accused of tampering with evidence, his cellphone, in January of this year. If convicted, the maximum possible penalty is five years in state prison."
According to copies of the state attorney's charges against Pullease, the latter statement relates to him tampering with his phone "to impair its verity or availability in a criminal trial.
The Sunrise Police Department released a statement on Thursday: "Sergeant Pullease has been on administrative leave throughout the investigation. Further determination with regards to the employment of Sergeant Pullease will be made."