Ohio police release body camera footage of LEO punching man during shots-fired incident

Ohio police release body camera footage of LEO punching man during shots-fired incident

Ceili Doyle The Columbus Dispatch, Ohio

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Columbus police released more than 49 minutes of video footage Monday in connection with an incident in which an officer punched a man who refused to comply with police instructions to stay back from an investigation scene into a shots-fired report.

The video is a compilation of three officers' body cameras and two cruisers' video footage showing at least three people taken into custody after a shooting was reported by the ShotSpotter detection system on Friday in the 900 block of Heyl Avenue on the South Side. Though the scene is repeated from angles, the clearest footage of the incident appears to come at the 22-minute mark.

Jonathan Robinson, 25, refuses to get back and argues with Officer Carl Harmon after he stops a woman with two children Robinson later identifies as his children as they attempt to cross the street toward the house where the investigation is focused.

In the video Harmon shouted at Robinson to "get back!" after he followed the woman crossing the street.

"Or what?" Robinson said.

"Get back," Harmon repeated.

"Or what?" Robinson asked again.

Harmon told Robinson to back down again as Officer Anthony L. Johnson, holding a shotgun, approaches Robinson and orders him to back away. Robinson refused and Johnson pushes Robinson back with his left hand, according to court documents.

"Get the f**k off me," Robinson allegedly said as he squared off facing Johnson.

Johnson then punched Robinson in the left side of his face with his right hand. Robinson was immediately thrown to the ground and arrested. At least two others were handcuffed and taken into custody during the confusion that resulted as others reacted to Robinson being struck and arrested.

Over the weekend cellphone video of the incident went viral across social media and several people responded criticizing Johnson's use of force.

Johnson has various social media accounts, all under the user name "OhNoItsDaPoPo," documenting his extensive community outreach efforts. One popular video shows Johnson caught on camera dancing with some local children.

Because the investigation into the incident and the officer's actions, Columbus police are not giving interviews or releasing further details at this time.


©2019 The Columbus Dispatch (Columbus, Ohio)