California News

Nov 23, 2009 6:55 AM by Bethany Tucker

Investigation launched after video of BART officer pops up on YouTube

In Oakland, a BART officer's use of force while arresting a passenger was caught on tape and is now being posted on sites like YouTube. And now, officials are investigating if the officer's use of force in the incident was justified or excessive.

The passenger, 37-year-old Michael Gibson, was reportedly shouting obscenities at other passengers, when a BART officer grabbed him and pushed him into a window. That window shattered on both Gibson and the officer. A BART Police Dept. spokesperson says the officer had to receive several stitches after being cut on his face, and Gibson suffered several cuts to his right hand and forearm. Gibson was also cut on his head.

Gibson was arrested after being released from the hospital. He was charged with felony battery on a police officer resulting in injury, and resisting arrest. He was also charged with public intoxication.

Gibson's father spoke to our Bay Area affiliate, KNTV, on the phone. He says his son is struggling with substance abuse and mental illness. But, he says his son is not a threat and if the officer would have talked to him calmly the outcome would have likely been different.

The officer involved has not been identified. He is now on leave as he recovers from his injuries.

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