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From: Bro. Edwards <bro.edwards@berkeley.edu>
Subject: Police: 'No evidence' of excessive force in Michael Bennett incident
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From: "Bro. Edwards" <bro.edwards@berkeley.edu>
Subject: Police: No evidence of excessive force in Michael Bennett incident
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Date: Sat, 30 Sep 2017 13:52:29 +0200 (CEST)
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Police said Friday they found "no evidence" that officers used 
excessive force in detaining Seattle Seahawks defensive end 
Michael Bennett during an August incident in Las Vegas and that 
they had reasonable suspicion to make the stop.

Bennett has accused police officers of racial profiling, saying 
they pointed guns at him and used excessive force in the 
incident, which occurred outside a nightclub after the Floyd 
Mayweather Jr.-Conor McGregor fight on Aug. 26.

The body camera of the officer who initially detained Bennett 
was not turned on. Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo said Friday 
that police sorted through 861 videos, including from body 
cameras from other officers and hotel security cameras, and 
found that 193 were pertinent to the investigation. From there, 
they said they pieced together a timeline of the incident and 
played video for the media at a news conference. They said 
Bennett's detainment lasted about 10 minutes, seven of which 
were spent in a police car.

The video shown by police showed an officer with his weapon 
drawn over Bennett on the sidewalk. Police said Bennett was 
handcuffed, moved to a police vehicle and spoken to by another 
officer, who told Bennett that police were looking for an active 
shooter. After an exchange with police that lasted a few 
minutes, police took the handcuffs off Bennett and he was told 
he could leave. Bennett shook one of the officers' hands and 
walked away.

Lombardo said the internal investigation showed that the 
officers behaved "appropriately and professionally" and that 
"the incident was not about race." He said two other individuals 
were also detained in a similar manner, one black and one 

Bennett told reporters earlier this month that the incident was 
"a traumatic experience for me and my family" and he was 
considering filing a civil rights lawsuit.

Bennett first gave his side of the incident on Twitter on Sept 
6. He said that officers pointed guns at him "for doing nothing 
more than simply being a black man in the wrong place at the 
wrong time" and ordered him to lie down on the ground.

Bennett wrote that one officer, with his gun drawn, warned him 
that he would "blow my f---ing head off" if he moved. Another 
officer jammed his knee into Bennett's back and handcuffed him, 
according to Bennett.

"The Officers' excessive use of force was unbearable," Bennett 
wrote. "I felt helpless as I lay there on the ground handcuffed 
facing the real-life threat of being killed. All I could think 
of was 'I'm going to die for no other reason than I am black and 
my skin color is somehow a threat.'"

Bennett wrote that he was placed in a police car before officers 
confirmed his identity, realized he was not a suspect and 
released him "without any legitimate justification for the 
Officers' abusive conduct."

"They apparently realized I was not a thug, common criminal or 
ordinary black man but Michael Bennett a famous professional 
football player," he wrote.

The video police shown on Friday showed Bennett identifying 
himself as a Seahawks player after police allowed him to get out 
of the police car and told him he was not under arrest.

Bennett's attorney, John Burris in Oakland, California, said he 
wants to review videos more closely. But he said he believed the 
clips shown verified Bennett's accounts.

"He was not acting improperly,'' Burris told The Associated 
Press. "He was not acting suspicious. He was not involved in any 
criminal activity.

"There's nothing to go on, no description, other than you see 
this big black man running,'' the attorney added. "He was 
running like everyone else, trying to get away.''

Lombardo said the intent of Friday's news conference was not to 
"disparage" Bennett, acknowledging there are "two sides to every 

"Mr. Bennett has a valid perspective as a person who experienced 
a reasonable suspicion stop for a felony crime," he said. "Those 
who experience such a stop, especially when they have not 
committed a crime, are not likely to feel good about it. But 
there is a reason why officers are trained to do what they do 
and what they did that night."

The officer who chased Bennett and handcuffed him didn't have 
his body camera on at the time, Lombardo said, and might face 
departmental discipline.

Otherwise, "I believe they acted appropriately and 
professionally,'' the sheriff said of the officers.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.