Columbus, OH – Police have released bodycam and dashcam footage of an incident on June 7 after cell phone video of an officer hitting a man went viral and sparked outrage in the community.
The ShotSpotter detection system alerted Columbus police to shots fired at about 4 p.m. in the 900-block of Heyl Avenue on the south side of Columbus, The Columbus Dispatch reported.
Officers arrived on the scene and began investigating, including talking to the people in the house on the corner, nearest the address where the gunfire was heard.
While police were questioning a man from that house, more officers arrived and a police helicopter began circling overhead, the video showed.
All of a sudden, a woman carrying two toddlers made a mad dash across the street toward the house that was being investigated.
Officers ordered the woman to stop and Columbus Police Officer Carl Harmon stepped up to block her, according to The Columbus Dispatch.
That’s when 25-year-old Jonathan Robinson, who was the woman’s husband, decided to get in Officer Harmon’s face and squared off with the police officer, the video showed.
“Get back!” the officer ordered Robinson in the video.
“Or what?” Robinson asked.
“Get back!” Officer Harmon said again.
“Or what?” Robinson challenged him, stepping closer to the officer.
“Keep back,” Officer Harmon told him one more
At that point, Columbus Police Officer Anthony Johnson intervened.
The video showed Officer Johnson, carrying a shotgun in his right hand, used his left hand to shove Robinson as he warned the man to “get back.”
Then he switched his shotgun to his left hand and used his right to punch Robinson in the face with a closed fist, the video showed.
Robinson reeled backwards and then was grabbed by two other police officers, who took him to the ground and handcuffed him, the video showed.
At that point, Robinson’s brother tried to get involved and aggressively approached officers.
The video showed he got a face full of pepper spray for his trouble but was not ultimately arrested.
Bodycam and interior dashcam video showed that Officer Johnson tried to talk to Robinson once he was seated in the back of his police vehicle.
However, Robinson wasn’t interested in civil discourse. Nor did he cooperate and provide his Social Security number to the officer, the video showed.
Officer Johnson had to scan Robinson fingerprints on a portable machine to try to confirm his identity when the man’s Georgia driver’s license wasn’t coming up in the system.
But later, once Robinson had a chance to cool down, he and the officer engaged in a friendly conversation as they sat inside the SUV.
The officer explained that police had to stop his wife and children when she rushed the house they were investigating and Robinson seemed to understand.
“I don’t know what she was doing,” Robinson told Officer Johnson in the video.
Officer Johnson told Robinson that he should explain it to his wife later and tell her that she caused what led to his arrest.
And then the officer gave the handcuffed man a pep talk, the video showed.
Robinson confided that he was thinking about starting a landscaping business and the officer suggested that he also consider property management.
Officer Johnson has a reputation on his police department for positive interactions with the community that he serves.
He is very active on social media and posts under the username “OhNoItsDaPoPo,” The Columbus Dispatch reported.
There is even a video of him dancing with some neighborhood kids.
Robinson was charged with disorderly conduct and obstruction of official business, WBNS reported.
“Columbus Police is conducting an investigation into all aspects of this incident,” the police department posted on its official Facebook page. “The results of the investigation will be released upon its completion.”
Watch the incident unfold in the video below – best view of the altercation begins at 22 minutes: