5 Alabama Police Officers Fired for Beating Unconscious Suspect After Car Chase


cop-busts-a-move(FOX NEWS)   BIRMINGHAM, Ala. —  Five Birmingham police officers were fired Wednesday for beating an apparently unconscious suspect after a roadway chase, an attack caught on a patrol car videotape that didn’t surface publicly for a year.

Police Chief A.C. Roper said the officers, who were not identified, were seasoned veterans but acted in a “shameful” manner.

The video shows police pursuing Anthony Warren’s van on Jan. 23, 2008. One officer on foot was injured when the van swerved through traffic. The van overturned on a ramp, ejecting Warren, who lay motionless as officers ran toward him. The video shows them beating him with fists, feet and a billy club.

Roper said the department had “terminated 50 years of combined service due to 10 seconds of injustice.”

The officers can appeal.

Authorities believe numerous Birmingham officers and as many as a half-dozen supervisors saw the video over the past year, but none reported it.

“In addition to these terminations, we’re also reviewing our supervisor’s actions, reporting mechanisms and policies,” Roper said.

He said disciplinary action may be taken against supervisors. The Alabama Bureau of Investigation will review possible criminal charges.

District Attorney Brandon Falls said Wednesday the tape of the beating surfaced unexpectedly as prosecutors were preparing to try Warren for assault in connection with the chase.

He said prosecutors had a video of the chase “but the beating was not on the copy we had.”

Falls said the prosecutor wanted to play the video for the jury but, for technical reasons, she needed another copy and asked for the original.

“We got the original the week before the trial … and that’s where she saw the rest of the tape,” he said.

He said they contacted the defense, the Alabama Bureau of Investigation and the Birmingham police chief.

Warren, who had been held under $1 million bond after the chase, pleaded guilty in March 2009 to first-degree assault and was sentenced to 20 years in prison. Because of his plea, no trial was held.


Birmingham police beating video


5 Responses to 5 Alabama Police Officers Fired for Beating Unconscious Suspect After Car Chase

  • I don’t believe that the officers were right in beating him. I do not believe that the officers knew that the man was unconscioous, it looks like they just reacted. I can’t blame them in a way. On the tape you cleary see the officer gets run down by the man driven the car. How fair is that, a man driven a car at 100 mph can endanger the lives of all those people on the road, but he can’t be beaten and taken as a danger to the officers. They didn’t know what to expect. Futhermore people should stop always trying to pull the race card. Regaurdless of what color the man was,he was wrong. I think this was the very reason why it took the tape a year to surface. Noone would really understand the postion of the officers because of the actions of past situation with real police burtality. I don’t think they should have been fired.

  • I believe that the officers over reacted in this beating. They let thier emotions get the best of them and if an officer cannot control his emotions then he should not be in that line of work. This did not apprear to be racially motivated. Also, I see 6 officers, beat or kick the victim, not 5.

  • Excuse Me, but… where in this article does it say anything about race? Also, chases like this are exactly why they began using helicopters and invented spike strips. The officer that was standing out of his vehicle was pulling the typical macho nonsense. They could have got ahead of this guy and laid spike strips down and disabled his vehicle, forcing him to escape on foot. They then could have detained him without all this horse shit. Further more the pursuit of the police is what creates the danger. I know this because I develop small systems technologies to disable vehicles. The police could have reduced the danger caused by this individual by giving him some space and disabling his vehicle or following him with a helicopter. Now as far as beating him. Tiffany Maxwell you said that they didn’t know he was unconscious and that they shouldn’t have been fired. The police have guns for a reason. If you believe a suspect is a danger you use what they call escalated force. The fact that none of the officers can be seen carrying a gun when approaching the suspect tells me that they didn’t perceive him as much of a real threat. I believe that they did know he was unconscious and I believe that is the reason the footage of them beating this young man was removed from the first copy of the video that the Defense received. We need to hold these men accountable and that is why they should have been fired. The police sign up for this type of work so the whole “its a hard job” defense doesn’t fly with me.

    Hoorah! SEMPER FI!!!

  • I believe we need to re-visit history. Many white policemen were members of hate groups. Some white police officers murdered and torture black men,women,and children. No one should be surprise what the Alabama policemen done. Who help murdered Goodman,Schwerner, and Chaney. History of American toward people of color has always been abused,torture,and murdered. The white man with influence and power see black people as nothing but ex-slaves because it never was in the scheme of things for black people to be nothing but slaves in America. If it was not for the grace of God black folks would still be on some white man’s plantation. Now the plantations are not completly gone. The white man just has different types of plantations in 2009. for people of color.

  • I would like to see an investigation of the lawyers who edited the original copy’s, they should be dis-barred.

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