FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) - A traffic stop leading to an arrest in Fort Lauderdale is stirring controversy after a police officer was seen on video making an inflammatory comment.
The explosive cellphone video shows several Fort Lauderdale Police officers holding down a man before a sergeant is heard yelling, “I should’ve shot him” to the witness recording the footage, early Saturday morning.
The man police arrested is 20-year-old Rohan Warner. He now faces several charges, including aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and resisting arrest with violence.
Speaking with 7News on Monday, Warner said he heard the sergeant make the controversial comment. When asked what went through his mind at that moment, he replied, “I could have lost my life, over just somebody just trying to grab my license.”
Warner said he was leaving a Fort Lauderdale club, just after 1 a.m. Police were directing traffic to get an ambulance through the street when he was instructed to pull over.
“There’s a cop in front of me, he’s directing traffic, and there’s a cop on the right side of me. He’s also directing traffic,” said Warner.
The driver said there was some confusion, and police started asking to see his driver’s license. Warner said when he reached into his pocket the knife he uses for work fell out.
“My pocket knife came out accidentally,” said Warner.
The police report states, “This officer drew his weapon and held it at low ready while telling the driver to drop the knife, at which time he dropped it on the floorboard.”
The report goes on to state, “The driver (Warner) grabbed the knife and attempted to open it with the other hand.”
But Warner insisted he never tried to open the knife. “I didn’t grab the knife or anything,” he said. “I was just going to my pockets to grab what he asked for.”
Over the weekend, Warner appeared before a judge. “I find probable cause. Good luck to you, sir,” said the judge.
He has since bonded out of jail. He now faces serious charges over what he said was a miscommunication.
It’s a miscommunication that, Warner said, could have cost him his life. “It’s happening every day,” he said.
A spokesperson for Fort Lauderdale Police said they are aware of the video, and they have launched an internal affairs investigation. They are asking any witnesses who may have seen the traffic stop to come forward.
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