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Video: Seattle cop tackles transient accused of assault

Attorney claims officer misconduct, despite an investigation into the arrest being completed years ago

By PoliceOne Staff

SEATTLE — An area attorney at odds with the police department has obtained another video he believes shows officer misconduct, despite an investigation into the incident being completed years ago.

James Egan, who is at the center of a lawsuit against the city regarding its reluctance to release dash cam videos, requested footage of a May 2009 arrest outside a Belltown restaurant, according to Seattle Weekly. Dispatch reported a possible assault on two people and told officers the suspect was armed with either a knife or a gun.

A police report indicates officers encountered Mark T. Spencer and ordered him to the ground, but he kept his hands in his pockets and would not comply. In the video, an officer takes him to the pavement, where he was handcuffed and continued to be non-compliant, the report said.

A restaurant patron who witnessed the arrest filed a complaint to the Office of Professional Accountability (OPA), but the use of force was found justified in late 2009, Seattle Weekly reported.

Spencer told police his body felt “like carbon,” and one victim of the alleged assault said before police arrived that, Spencer spoke unintelligibly while throwing punches. Police commended the officers’ work in a volatile situation.

"This was textbook police work," SPD Sgt. Sean Whitcomb said. "These officers did a great job."

In total, Egan has requested 36 dash cam videos from the city in an effort to identify possible violations.

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