Video: SFPD disputes allegations of 'choking' in viral arrest at Giants game
Officer struggles to restrain a suspect in handcuffs near the concession stands in the park
By PoliceOne Staff
SAN FRANCISCO — A video of a San Francisco police officer arresting a man at a Giants baseball game has gone viral, and the San Francisco Police Department is defending the officer’s actions.
According to KTVU, Giants fan Cisco Lutu was at the ballpark when the incident occurred and began filming. He later uploaded the video to Instagram.
In the video, an SFPD officer struggles to restrain a suspect in handcuffs near the concession stands in the park, putting a hold around his neck. Lutu told KTVU that the fan appeared to be drunk and unruly.
The video spurred negative comments online, but San Francisco Police Public Information Officer Albie Esparza was quick to defend the officer.
"Of course to the public it appears this use of force was a little bit excessive to the untrained eye. But in reality, this officer did do what he was supposed to do," Esparza said.
The officer engaged in a control hold — an approved tactic in SFPD policy — and appeared to be readying an additional approved tactic — carotid restraint — during the incident, according to the report. Carotid restraint is considered use of force, but was not used after the suspect complied with commands.
The man in the video was kicked out of the game, but not arrested, according to the report.