In 2015, the city began cracking down on violent incidents within police stations and to encourage other departments to step up. The city paid about $15,000 for the video. (The exact amount was not made public.)
The video was meant as a warning to police officers about their violent tendencies, said Lassille, who has long run with the group. “It’s to help the public to see what happens when you’re on duty,” he said. “It’s an important message for the public to know because police officers have been doing this for over 50 years and we’re seeing this trend continue to escalate in recent years.”
Lassille said the number of complaints about officers using excessive force has continued to rise, with more than 400 officers responding to 734 incidents last year alone in the city.
“Some of these calls were violent. They started with ‘Put me in the ground. Put me in the ground,'” Lassille said. “Some of the calls were for traffic tickets, like traffic light violations. What we’re seeing is a situation where the police officers are out in the community and these kids are acting like they’re not there.”
Lassille said the city will keep monitoring the video and will make recommendations when needed.
If they have anything to do with it, police chief Jeff O’Brien has been critical of officers in recent months.
“It’s a good opportunity to be transparent with the community and be honest with the department,” O’Brien said, while in July he was criticized for his department’s response when officers were caught on tape breaking down the doors of three mothers in North Dallas who were waiting to have their children picked up from day care.
“I don’t really have anything to add to that other than let me be straight with you,” O’Brien said. “That’s not me.”
In November, an officer in McKinney was arrested and spent a month in jail after allegedly putting his hand on another officer’s leg during a traffic stop. The officer’s name has not been made public, but the incident did not appear on either O’Brien’s or the city’s dashboard-camera video archives.
The mayor said the video was the first of its kind to be made public, despite it being made more than five years ago. “We’ve worked hard, and I don’t think that I could do this without having been very transparent,” Farrow said. “This really is an extraordinary story
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