The Milwaukee Police Department on Wednesday released body-cam footage of its officers tackling and tasing Bucks rookie Sterling Brown during a January arrest.
The video escalates around the eight-minute mark, when several officers tell Brown to take his hands out of his pockets, then tackle him to the ground and tase him.
How did Brown attract the attention of a whole band of police officers? It seems that his initial offense was parking across multiple spots in an entirely empty lot.
“What should have been a simple parking ticket turned into an attempt at police intimidation, followed by the unlawful use of physical force, including being handcuffed and tased, and then unlawfully booked,” Brown said in a statement published to the Bucks’ official website.
In a statement of its own Wednesday, the Bucks organization offered full support to Brown, while calling out Milwaukee police for “shameful and inexcusable” behavior:
The abuse and intimidation that Sterling experienced at the hands of Milwaukee Police was shameful and inexcusable. Sterling has our full support as he shares his story and takes action to provide accountability.
Unfortunately, this isn’t an isolated case. It shouldn’t require an incident involving a professional athlete to draw attention to the fact that vulnerable people in our communities have experienced similar, and even worse, treatment.
Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales told reporters Wednesday he was “sorry this incident escalated to this level.”
This is far from the first time a professional athlete, or even an NBA player, has been front and center in a policing controversy. Then-Hawks wing Thabo Sefolosha was awarded $4 million in a settlement from the New York Police Department after officers broke his leg while arresting him outside a nightclub in 2015.
Brown averaged 4 points and 2.6 rebounds last season after being selected in the second round out of SMU.