EXCLUSIVE: NSW Police have defended their actions over the troubling and distressing arrest of a young Arabic-Australian man outside his own home in Western Sydney that was captured on video, saying the man allegedly bit a police officer and he wasn’t wearing a mask. Serkan Ozturk reports.
An arrest of a young Arab-Australian man outside his own family home in Western Sydney captured on mobile phone video has angered tens of thousands of the city’s residents in the outer suburbs as they face onerous restrictions during an extended lockdown brought on by a worsening Covid crisis that initially started in the city’s wealthy eastern suburbs.
Three NSW Police officers from Fairfield Police Station are depicted in the distressing video kneeling on the young man’s neck and back as he screams in pain that his hand his broken.
Witnesses meanwhile shout that the man “can’t breathe” as others allege he was the victim of racism, and arrested for “being Lebo”.
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Fairfield Police station has a recent history for police brutality, with officers attached to the station involved in the infamous 2013 Mardi Gras bashings of young, gay party-goers.
The violent and concerning incident took place on the afternoon of Thursday, July 29.
The video began to go viral on social media pages and WhatsApp messages by the next day.
True Crime News Weekly reported the story along with the video early on Sunday, August 1.
Police however allege the 23-year-old man wasn’t racially profiled or targeted for “being Lebo” but that they instead coincidentally happened to notice him leave his home without wearing a mask, as dictated by orders from NSW Health for residents in the eight council areas in Sydney’s west placed under harsh lockdown.
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“Officers from Fairfield City Police Area Command were patrolling Denison Street, Carramar, and noticed a man without a face covering,” a police spokesperson told True Crime News Weekly.
WATCH THE SHOCKING VIDEO & SEE WHAT YOU THINK
Police allege that when officers stopped to speak with the man he was uncooperative, and he failed to provide officers with a reasonable excuse for leaving his residence.
“It’s alleged he then refused to be searched before forcefully resisting arrest; biting the bicep of a 23-year-old male constable,” the spokesperson said.
Following his arrest, the man was searched with police alleging they uncovered more than 30 grams of cannabis, about 14 grams of cannabis oil, a small amount of LSD and an unknown clear liquid presumed to GHB.
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After being taken to Fairfield Police Station, the man was charged with three counts of possessing a prohibited drug as well as assaulting a police officer, resisting arrest and not complying with a public health order.
The man was refused bail and is expected to next appear at Burwood Local Court on Wednesday, August 4.
Police however refused to answer questions from True Crime News Weekly about what injuries the man may have suffered and what medical treatment he may have required after the incident.
The video of the young man’s arrest came to light just as nearly 1,500 more NSW Police officers as well as 300 Army soldiers descended upon the city’s south-west to supposedly deal with a worsening Covid crisis and crack down on residents flouting stay-at-home restrictions and breaking public health orders.
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