San Francisco, CA — Police are remaining tight-lipped on the actions of one of their officers this week who was seen on video allegedly shoving a skateboarding man, causing him to go flying over the police cruiser. The skateboarding man was severely injured and hospitalized.
An impromptu skateboard rally emerged Tuesday afternoon near Dolores Park in San Francisco and quickly devolved into chaos as police in riot gear descended on the scene.
According to San Francisco Police Officer Grace Gatpandan, police were not called to the scene over complaints but because a skateboarder had been injured. However, when police arrived, they blocked the roads and attempted to break up the unofficial show.
Their attempts to break up the show were apparently met with resistance from some of the skaters who allegedly shouted and threw objects at the cops. The situation came to a head when a man on a skateboard was seen skating down the street and attempting to pass an officer on foot.
The officer — apparently infuriated by the fact that people were skateboarding near him — appeared to shove the skater, causing him to smash into the cruiser and go hurling through the air, and then smashing down into the pavement.
According to police, two cruisers were vandalized and an officer was allegedly injured. The man on the skateboard who was shoved by the cop, however, was not reported to have been involved in any of the altercations.
Despite police claiming the need for riot gear and violent escalation, the turmoil lasted less than two hours and police reported zero arrests.
Police Officer Robert Rueca attempted to downplay the apparent act of aggression and told SF Gate that the cop and the skater actually just collided. However, in the slow motion version of the video below, you can clearly see the officer extend his arm in a deliberate attempt to hit the skater.
Oddly enough, Rueca said that the officer in the video below — who does not appear injured at all after the collision — was taken to a hospital to be treated for non-life threatening injuries. The officer being taken to the hospital was likely a move to create a record of injury to attempt to collaborate the story of an accidental collision in the likely event of a lawsuit.
There are no reports of an investigation being launched into the officer’s actions nor have police released the officer’s identity.
While there are reports on the severity of the skateboarder’s injury, the detail and extent of the injuries are unknown. The Free Thought Project will update this story as necessary when new details emerge.