Nice to see Sgt Delroy Smellie’s guide to community policing has been taken up by the lads in blue across the pond. Of course, American being America, everything is bigger and more spectacular over and these guys really go about their work with gusto. Must take hours of training to be able to land several precise and brutal blows to the head of a prone victim..er suspect..er obvious terrorist. Home of the Brave? Well, yes, if you’ve got your nightstick, riot shield and half a dozen pals to help you.
Footage of police beating an innocent basketball fan unconscious as he was celebrating a win by his college team has sent shockwaves through America.
University of Maryland student John McKenna was attacked after their victory over arch rivals Duke.
CCTV pictures show him skipping down the street waving his arms in joy.
He is then approached by police on horseback who stand over him before other cops in riot gear swoop and start hitting him with their batons.
Police initially claimed Mr McKenna had attacked their officers and horses, causing them “minor injuries”, as they responded to reports of trouble after the game.
But the footage clearly shows he never struck out – and even tried to back away when confronted.
The FBI is now investigating the incident which left the 21-year-old needing eight staples to repair a head wound.
He was also allegedly told by officers in Maryland not to make a fuss about his injuries because they would have to fill out more paperwork.
Mr McKenna was arrested and placed in the back of a police van before being taken to hospital.
Charges against him have since been dropped and police chief Roberto Hylton has suspended one officer.
He said: “I was outraged. I was very disappointed at the conduct that I saw on the part of my officers on the video tape.”
Mr McKenna’s family said in a statement: “Some of these characters ought to go to jail, some ought to be booted off the force.
“The remainder should be properly trained to discover that force is not always necessary, and brutality is always wrong.”
Americans are already drawing comparisons with the beating of a black man, Rodney King, in Los Angeles in 1991.
The officers accused of that incident were acquitted by a jury, sparking riots across the city which left 53 people dead.