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Chief releases 2 new videos of Fort Lauderdale officer who pushed Black Lives Matter protester

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Fort Lauderdale Police Chief Rick Magilone released two new videos on Tuesday that show Officer Steven Pohorence, who is accused of pushing a Black Lives Matter protester who was kneeling.

Magilone suspended Pohorence, and said the videos show recent incidents of Pohorence’s possible use of excessive force. The incidents captured in these new videos are not related to the investigation into the shoving of the protester.

Magilone also said he decided to release the body-worn-camera videos after a public records request brought the incidents to light.

“These videos are concerning his response to resistance,” Magilone said.

In one of the incidents, Pohorence is accused of delivering several knee strikes while trying to subdue a man who had refused to get off the bus and later off the public transportation area on April 18. The video released also included a Sept. 24 incident.

RAW VIDEO (April 18)

RAW VIDEO (Sept. 24)

Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis joined the news conference and said there is “zero tolerance” for “improper behavior.” Magilone said he sent the two videos to the FDLE to let the state agency determine if there need to be two other investigations into Pohorence’s actions.

Magilone said the department’s internal affairs unit will be adding the review of body cam video to the use-of-force review process.

POHORENCE’S BACKGROUND

When Pohorence pushed the 19-year-old woman on May 31st in downtown Fort Lauderdale, there were people recording with their mobile phones. The video went viral. The Broward State Attorney’s Office forwarded the case to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

The 29-year-old former Florida Highway Patrol trooper received several commendations and positive reviews. But this is not the first time Pohorence behavior is under investigation since he joined the department about four years ago.

Records show Pohorence has had 70 incidents under investigation by internal affairs, and 36 of the incidents were traffic stops for stolen cars or tags. Pohorence pointed his weapon at the drivers every time. And in 14 of the cases, he used physical strength or a Taser to subdue the suspect.

NEWS CONFERENCE

Fort Lauderdale Police presser - 6/23/20

WATCH LIVE: The Fort Lauderdale Police Department holds a press conference to release newly discovered video related to an officer that pushed a kneeling protester to the ground.

Posted by WPLG Local 10 on Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Local 10 News Assignment Desk Manager Kerry Weston contributed to this report.


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