New Jersey police have released the bodycam footage of what led up to and followed an incident captured in a viral video of a police officer punching a female beach-goer in the head.
Here is the original video posted by a witness that has since garnered over 6 million views and brought national attention to the incident:
In the nine-minute clip of bodycam footage released by Wildwood police Wednesday, police officers are seen asking the woman featured in the video, Emily Weinman, 20 — who was on the beach with her 18-month-old daughter, the girl's father and a friend — to breathe into a breathalyzer after finding alcoholic iced tea drinks near her.
The drinks, she tells the officers, are her aunt's. When the officer asks where her aunt is, Weinman says she's allowed to carry alcohol underage, just not consume it. The officer cites both "possession and consumption" as potential offenses. When Weinman refuses to give the officer her last name, the situation unravels.
"You thought we were drinking, so now you’re mad because your breathalyzer came up negative," Weinman said as an officer is apparently writing a citation. "You don't need my last name."
"Alright, that's it. I'm done with you," the officer says, then turns and asks another officer for handcuffs.
"Don't f***ing touch me," says Weinman.
"You're about to get dropped," warns the officer.
NJ.com describes what happens next: "When he tries to arrest her, she resists and hurls expletives as they struggle in the sand. The officer punches the women as she resists. On the ground, while being cuffed, she then turns her head toward the arresting officer and spits in his direction before she is taken away to a waiting police vehicle."
It's unclear from the video who initiates contact. WATCH:
In the video, the arresting officer describes to his fellow officers what took place:
I go to stop her for ... underage drinking. She says she’s 20. She had Twisted Teas. She wouldn’t give me her last name, so I said, "Hey, if you’re not going to give me your information, you’re going to be locked up." She tried walking away from me. Once she tried walking away from me, I tried grabbing her. She tried kicking at us so I slammed her on the ground. She kicked him and then I hit her a couple times. And then I put her in cuffs and locked her up.
Weinman was charged with two counts of aggravated assault on an officer and possession of alcohol as a minor.
The police department has defended the actions of the officer. "From what I see on the video and only on the video, from not even talking to the officers, I think they did a decent job," Wildwood Police Chief Robert Regalbuto said of the bodycam footage released Wednesday, NJ.com reports. "I think we could have done a better job at trying to explain to her, but it didn’t appear Ms. Weinman wanted to hear what we had to say."
Wildwood Mayor Ernie Troiano Jr. has also defended the officer. "She assaults them, she spits at them, she kicks them," he said Tuesday. "At that point, the police officer did what he had to do."
But Weinman's lawyer says the videos actually support his client's statements. "I don't think it changes anything," attorney Stephen Dicht said. "I think it shows the police overreacted and used excessive force."
NJ.com identifies the officers involved in the arrest as Patrolmen Thomas Cannon, John Hillman, and Robert Jordan. Which of the officers was involved in the physical confrontation with Weinman is unclear.
Partial transcript of video via HuffPost's Hayley Miller.