Two explosive videos trending on Reddit show a 20-year-old assaulted by police in Ontario, Canada, allegedly for events following his running a red light on a skateboard.
“That’s where the cop car chased him down and swerved in front of him,” Platt told BarrieToday in initial reporting. “I heard him asking the officer why he was still bothering him after he already gave him a ticket.”
The first video shows an angle where the 20-year-old is pinned down a Barrie (Ontario) police officer writhing and fearful, face bloodied. The officer asks him to put his hands behind his head, but his upper torso is bound between the officer and the ground.
It doesn’t appear as though the young man can comply with the officer’s orders because his hands are trapped.
The officer smashes the man in the head with a taser. Once another office arrives to assist, the officer flips the man over and slams his head directly into the pavement.
The second, longer video shows another angle, with some footage of the man picked up and essentially thrown into the police cruiser.
One commenter, u/Shoggoths420, says these actions rank par for the course in the town:
“I grew up in Barrie, and sadly it looks like nothing has changed. The running joke about Barrie police was they weren’t cool enough to be Toronto police, and too dumb even for Peel Region.”
“Barrie used to be a commuter town, and now it has grown in population but not substance. Local government has rejected multiple plans for safe use/injection sites, homeless or drop-in shelters and tries hard to make life impossible if you are in any way disadvantaged/poor/not white. (The level of “casual racism” in that town is f—king abysmal).”
The mayor of Barrie, Jeff Lehman, tweeted that there would be an investigation and “full accountability.”
However, it is unknown when or why police escalated the altercation, though the force appeared highly excessive.
The Barrie Police Service, in a tweeted statement, said it “is aware of a video that has been posted on social media and is currently looking into the circumstances that resulted in the arrest this afternoon on Dunlop Street in downtown Barrie. We will provide further comment once the details are confirmed.”
In a subsequent update by BarrieToday, the young man arrested, identified as Skylar Kent, spoke out on his actions.
“I’m not proud of how I handled myself,” Kent said. “I definitely wasn’t in the wrong, but I could’ve been calmer.”
Kent kept comments to a minimum, at the advice of his legal counsel.