MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - Four Miami Beach Police officers have been relieved of duty while officials investigate the use of force during an arrest.
According to investigators, officers took 24-year-old Dalonta Crudup into custody after he slammed his bike into an officer in the area of 13th Street and Ocean Court, early Monday morning.
Police nabbed Crudup when he tried to run into a hotel near Collins Avenue and 15th Street.
In total, officers made three arrests.
A New York man walked out of Miami-Dade County Jail with cuts on his face and a busted lip after a rough encounter with Miami Beach Police.
“Punching me and elbowing me in the face, I literally got jumped by officers,” said Khalid Vaughn.
But initially, police weren’t after 28-year-old Khalid Vaughn early Monday. They were after a man on a scooter allegedly running from police.
A surveillance camera caught part of the chase and a chuckle from a group in the alley as a bike officer followed behind.
But how this would all end is no laughing matter.
Police said an officer was hit by that scooter, and then the driver, 24-year-old Dalonta Crudup, ducked into the Royal Palm Hotel on Collins.
That’s where Vaughn came in.
“Cops came in behind him, had him in handcuffs and started beating him,” he said.
He didn’t like what he was seeing, so he pulled out his phone.
“I started recording and was like you already got him in handcuffs, you don’t got to beat him,” Vaughn said.
And he says that’s when police turned their attention to him.
The arrest report states Vaughn “keeps recording and disregarding officers’ commands,” and then ignores “multiple loud, clear verbal commands to stop resisting.”
That’s when the struggle began.
As police arrested him, according to the report, one officer was “forced to deliver multiple elbow strikes to Mr. Vaughn’s facial area.”
Another officer hit him in the “right side of the face with approximately four closed fist strikes.”
A third officer delivered “closed fists strikes, right and left fists, to Mr. Vaughn’s face and general head area.”
And a fourth officer moves in with what is described as “distractionary strikes to Mr. Vaughn’s left rib area with closed right fist.”
While the video of what happened hasn’t been released, the Miami Beach Police chief has seen it and released a statement saying in part, “… I have serious concerns about the force utilized after Mr. Crudup was in custody, including the level of force utilized in the subsequent arrest of Mr. Vaughn.”
Four officers are now off the street after an incident that all started with a reckless ride caught on camera outside the Sherbrooke Hotel.
“I appreciate and applaud what the chief has done, suspended these officers until the internal affairs investigation is complete, and if anybody abused their position, of course they should be reprimanded,” said Sherbrooke Hotel owner Mitch Novick.
The report for the other man arrested stated that officers kicked him in the body and in the head.
Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle said she is also concerned about how the arrests were handled. She released a statement saying in part, “Presently, I have senior members of my staff reviewing all of the actions taken during those arrests and will follow all the evidence to its full legal conclusion.”
As for the officer who got hit by the scooter, he’s expected to be OK.
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