Man hit by GRPD officer: Ordeal was ‘terrifying’

Grand Rapids
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A March 18, 2019 photo shows Bronquel Brown during a News 8 interview.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The suspect at the center of a violent arrest that resulted in a Grand Rapids police officer being placed on leave said he was sore as he bonded out of jail.

Bronquel Brown, 24, was arrested late Sunday night during a traffic stop. Police say that after refusing to comply with officers’ orders, Brown was pulled from the car he was driving and officers used a Taser on him. Police say Brown was then struck some 30 times in the leg by one of the officers.

Grand Rapids Police Department Interim Police Chief David Kiddle said Monday that internal affairs began investigating after a commander filed a complaint about the officer seen repeatedly punching the suspect. Saying he was concerned after an initial review of what happened, Kiddle said he decided to place the officer on paid administrative leave while the internal investigation was underway.

Brown told 24 Hour News 8 he wasn’t aware of the issues that developed surrounding his arrest until after he was released late Monday night.

“I just feel like the police officer was wrong,” Brown said. “I don’t think officers should do that while somebody’s on the ground, undefendable.”

Shortly after walking out of the jail, Brown watched the cellphone video showing his arrest for the first time.

“It’s just scary and terrifying just seeing that,” Brown said. “Some officers don’t need to be working like that — that got so much anger toward people, that’s undefendable.”

Police said Brown was not injured during the arrest, but Brown said he was in pain.

“My body is sore right now. My whole body is sore,” he said.” I’m just trying to stand strong right now.”

Police said Brown was being pulled over for a traffic violation when he initially didn’t stop for officers. He eventually pulled into the driveway of his mother’s home with an officer still trailing him.

Police said Brown had his toddler son in the vehicle with him and was driving without a license. They say he also had an outstanding warrants for his arrest. Records show it pertained to charges of operating an unregistered vehicle in Walker.

Brown’s family members said they were in contact with an attorney.

His supporters whisked him away when 24 Hour News 8 asked Brown if he felt responsibility for anything that happened. They said he couldn’t respond to the questions due to the pending criminal charges.

Brown had never been charged with a felony, records show, but a pending felony count of resisting and obstructing police was listed in Grand Rapids District Court records connected to Sunday night’s incident.

The interim GRPD chief promised a thorough investigation and said bodycam footage of the incident would soon be made public.

Brown, who according to jail records is 5-foot-9 and 190 pounds, was jovial and smiling as he left the jail on bond.

“I’m not really angry. I’m not an angry person,” Brown said. “I get over things fast.”

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