A video of an unidentified New York Police Department officer pepper spraying a man and allegedly taking more than $1,000 in cash from his pocket has surfaced online.
In the below clip, 35-year-old Lamard Joye is pushed against a chain-link fence by the unnamed officer. Joye then demands that the officer return his money. The officer appears to have something else in his hand, but it is unclear if it Joye's cash. The cop responds by pepper spraying Joye in the face.
The confrontation occurred shortly after midnight on Sept. 16. in Coney Island, Brooklyn. Joye was not arrested.
The incident is currently under investigation by the Civilian Complaint Review board, an independent organization charged with investigating instances of police brutality and misconduct.
"The incident was precipitated by a call of a man with a gun," Brooklyn district attorney Kenneth P. Thompson told the New York Times. "When officers arrived at the scene, they encountered numerous people at the location. As a result of the allegations, the matter is under investigation by the Internal Affairs and CCRB."
Joye told multiple media outlets that the money has yet to be returned despite providing evidence that it belonged to him.
For their part, Patrick Lynch, president of the police labor union Patrolmen's Benevolent Association urged that people not pass quick judgement.
"A 35-second-long video does not provide enough information about a police encounter to come to any conclusion about what transpired," Lynch told the New York Daily News.
This comes at the heels of the death of Eric Garner, a Staten Island man who was killed after being placed in a chokehold by a plainclothes police officer. Garner's death is still under investigation. According to the Daily News, Joye asked the cop whether he would suffer the same fate that Garner did.
In September, New York City mayor Bill de Blasio told Fusion's Jorge Ramos that the city will retrain its police force on how to better interact with the community its tasked with protecting.
“There is no question something is wrong and that we need to do better,” he said.
Fidel Martinez is an editor at Fusion.net. He's also a Texas native and a lifelong El Tri fan.