LITTLE VILLAGE — Chicago Police officers are seen on video tasering and pepper spraying a man in front of his children after he recorded a traffic stop where cops were cuffing a different man in Little Village.
At the start of the now-viral video, Angel Ramirez films police officers as they conduct a traffic stop at a gas station in the 2800 block of South Pulaski Road. Ramirez’s wife, Anna Morentin, captured the interaction from inside their car and uploaded the footage to Facebook on July 4.
Ramirez, who is standing a few feet from the car as the officers try to cuff another man, is approached by a police officer who asks him to “back away” because he is at a “crime scene.”
As Ramirez slowly backs away from the officer, the officer walks toward Ramirez, grabs his arm and reaches for Ramirez’s phone. As Ramirez and two officers step out of frame, Ramirez is heard telling officers “not to touch him” before being pushed on to the hood of a SUV.
Police officers can be heard yelling at Ramirez to put his hands behind his head, to which Ramirez replies, “What did I do?”
As several officers enter the scuffle, Ramirez struggles with them as they try to cuff him. The officers then back away and tase Ramirez.
“Why are you tasing him?” a person in the car inquires before police officers taser Ramirez again. Children in the car can be heard crying as Ramirez falls to the ground.
One child can repeatedly be heard yelling, “Daddy.”
“You’re making my kids cry,” Ramirez’s wife tells a police officer.
While handcuffed on the ground, Ramirez can be heard asking if the encounter is being recorded. “Record that s—! They tased me four times. I didn’t do anything.”
A passenger ask the officers: “What was he doing? He was recording. He wasn’t doing anything but recording.”
“He was in our crime scene,” an officer responds. “We asked him to step away three times.”
Later in the video, Ramirez complains his face is burning after a police officer pepper sprays the 30-year-old.
The video has been viewed nearly 300,000 times since it was uploaded. Chicago Now reported the incident Tuesday evening.
The incident took place at 11:49 p.m. July 3 in the 2800 block of South Pulaski Road, the Chicago Police Department confirmed.
Officer were conducting a traffic stop of another vehicle when Ramirez approached officers “aggressively” before asking him to step away, police said.
“Officers deployed OC spray, which was unsuccessful, so officers then deployed a taser,” police said.
Ramirez was later treated and released from St. Anthony’s Hospital, Chicago Police Department confirmed via email.
However, the video uploaded disputes the police account of Ramirez walking toward officers.
The Chicago Police Department declined a request for dash cam or body cam footage showing Ramirez walking toward police officers.
“Because this incident is still under investigation, we’re not able to comment on or release any further information other than the narrative of what occurred and the offender charges,” said Sally Bown, a spokeswoman for the Chicago Police Department.
Another police spokesman, Sgt. Cindy Guerra, defended the officer’s actions, saying that “anyone is allowed to record an on-duty law enforcement officer where there is no expectation of privacy. However, a law enforcement officer is also authorized to take reasonable action in order to secure a scene, ensure the safety of other officers and arrestees and to maintain order during the commission of their particular duties.”
Ramirez and his wife could not be reached for comment at the time of publication.
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