OPP to investigate violent arrest by Barrie police officer captured on video

The violent arrest of a man in downtown Barrie is captured on video, raising concern about the excessive use of force by police. Shauna Hunt gets the latest from eyewitnesses calling for accountability.

By The Canadian Press and News Staff

Ontario Provincial Police will be investigating the arrest of a man on a downtown Barrie street caught on video.

In the video, a Barrie police officer is seen struggling with the man on the ground, and holds what appears to be a stun gun to his shoulder, threatening to “light (him) up.”

The officer then hits the man on the head with the bright yellow device.

The cellphone video, shot by a bystander, ends after a second police officer arrives and helps flip the man on his stomach to be handcuffed.

Video of the incident that has circulated on social media can be found here.

A different angle of the arrest shows a police officer holding the man up against a police vehicle.

Barrie police say the arrest of the 20-year-old Barrie man occurred on Thursday around 3 p.m. on Dunlop Street East. Police say he is facing a charge of cause disturbance and assault with attempt to resist arrest.

Police Chief Kimberly Greenwood said in effort to ensure the process is transparent and accountable, the OPP Professional Standards Unit have been tasked with the investigation.

The officer involved in the arrest has been reassigned pending the results of the investigation.

“The images captured in the video are concerning to both the public and myself,” Chief Greenwood said in a release.

“I acknowledge the public’s concerns being expressed based on the limited availability of information at this time. I want to assure the community that any findings of misconduct will be pursued,” added Greenwood.

Mayor Jeff Lehman tweeted on Thursday night he had seen the video, which was posted on social media, and that it will be investigated.

Lehman says there will be full accountability.

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