WOODSON TERRACE, Mo. (AP) - The FBI has opened an investigation into the arrest of a Black man in Missouri during which cellphone video shows three white officers allowing a police dog to repeatedly bite him.
Woodson Terrace police Chief Randy Halstead said in an email to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that his department was "fully cooperating" with the investigations being conducted by the FBI and the St. Louis County prosecutor’s office into last week’s arrest.
Federal officials and St. Louis County Prosecutor Wesley Bell declined to discuss their investigations with the newspaper.
Officers were called Monday morning to a report that a man had broken into a business in Woodson Terrace, according to a police statement posted on Facebook. The man appeared to be on drugs and threatened officers, and they warned him the dog would be used if he continued to resist arrest, the department wrote.
Cellphone video from an onlooker shows the dog biting the man’s foot as he yells out in pain. The dog’s handler holds it by a leash but allows the biting to go on for about 30 seconds.
After the officer pulls off the dog, the man appears to take a step but stumbles and the dog lunges at him again, biting one of his legs for another 30 seconds until the officer stops the animal.
The man was treated at a hospital and released. He hasn’t been charged with any crimes.
Protesters gathered outside the Woodson Terrace Police Department on Friday to demand the firing and prosecution of the three officers.
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