Fresno, CA – A man who heavily damaged a Fresno Police Department SUV by kicking out the windows and smashing the roof by jumping up and down on it was arrested Thursday after being yanked off the roof.
Adolfo Lopez, 23, was captured in a video on top of the police SUV and even doing jumping jacks on the roof before being taken down by multiple officers after a 40-minute standoff. (Video below)
In the video, Lopez jumped up and down on the roof of the patrol vehicle, which was parked in front of the police headquarters.
He then smashed the lights on the roof with his foot. Then he stood on top of the roof and did jumping jacks.
The Fresno Bee reported that Lopez challenged officers to fight and shouted obscenities and gave the middle finger to the crowd of about 100 people. Lopez also took off his belt and was using it as a weapon until a police officer took it away from him.
At one point, an officer approached by standing on the hood and then walked up to get Lopez off the roof. As Lopez squared off to engage the approaching police officer, another officer on the ground grabbed his left foot and yanked Lopez who then fell on his back and hit the ground as the crowd cheered.
Officers then grabbed Lopez and handcuffed him. Lopez shouted, “I’m not on drugs!” as he was taken to the ground, according to the Fresno Bee.
“Why’d you do it, dude?” Lopez was asked as he was taken into an ambulance.
“What does that matter,” Lopez responded, according to the Fresno Bee.
The Fresno Bee reported that several officers suffered cuts from the broken glass on the damaged SUV. One officer had a broken finger.
Fresno Police Department Lieutenant Mark Hudson said Lopez was booked on charges of felony vandalism. He also faces charges for the broken finger sustained by the police officer.
You can see that video here (more below):
The video of the incident comes in sharp contrast to an recent incident in Newark, New Jersey where officers were suspended for failing to take action when somebody jumped on their cars.
In the bizarre scene captured on video by a witness, Aulston stomped around on the roof of the police car before he jumped onto the hood and stomped around some more.
Then Aulston jumped off the car and went to the driver’s window of the police car, and appeared to engage with the officer for almost a minute before he returned to the front of the car and jumped up on the hood again.
In the video, Aulston jumped up and down as hard as he could on the cruiser’s hood, making visible dents in the metal, while the officer sat in his patrol car and did nothing as he waited for backup to arrive.
Several times the man squatted down and appeared to engage the officer through the windshield in a menacing manner, the video showed, before he leapt onto the police car’s roof yet again.
Bystanders can be heard in the video speculating about why the man is “going crazy” and whether he might be on drugs, and wondering aloud why the officer has done nothing to stop the assault on his vehicle.
About 90 seconds after the video began, witnesses started speculating about where the officer’s backup was, as the officer continued to sit in the police car that was under assault.
The officer in the car has been on the police force for seven months, NJ Advance Media reported.
"Let's not mix restraint with not doing their jobs. I'm getting calls from people saying, 'Why didn't they arrest him? Instead, they just let him walk away. There's $5,000 of damage to the cars. It's not the money, it's the fact they didn't do their jobs,” Director Ambrose said.
Two minutes after the video began, two additional police units arrived to back up the one the man was standing on.
Then the officer got out of the first backup unit and approached the rear of the police vehicle Aulston was standing on and talked to him, the video showed.
All of a sudden, the man ran down off the back of the police car, past the officer, and up onto the hood and roof of the backup patrol car, the video showed.
People nearby cheered at the man’s antics, and so he took off yet again, down the back of that police car, past another Newark police officer, and up onto the hood and roof of the second backup unit, the video showed.
Aulston stood screaming unintelligibly on the hood of the third cruiser as bystanders began to heckle him and calling for him to steal a patrol car.
Then the video showed Aulston jumped down off the patrol car and approached the officer aggressively.
Despite the hoots and hollers of witnesses that seemed to escalate the man’s antics, police remained calm, the video showed.
NJ Advance Media said Newark police had identified the second officer as a 10-year veteran of the police department.
Officials suspended the officer in the first car and the officer in the first back-up unit. Neither suspended officer has been identified because the investigation is ongoing, police said.
Aulston was later arrested and charged with three counts of criminal mischief, WABC reported.
In the past, Newark police have been criticized for their aggressive policing, after a U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) investigation found evidence of excessive force, unconstitutional stops, searches and seizures, and racial discrimination in arrests, NJ Advance Media reported. The department remains under a consent decree with the DoJ.
The Newark PD has also been accused of retaliating against citizens who tried to observe or film police activity, but on Aug. 4, more than 50 onlookers stood watching and filming with their cell phones as the chaotic scene progressed.
"We still have to do our jobs," Ambrose said. "This sends the wrong message. The majority of our 1,100 officers work hard and would have handled it as they are trained. There is no room in the NPD for non-workers looking for a paycheck. Their fellow officers and Newark residents don't deserve that type of disservice."
Some have said the officers showed restraint that might have served to defuse an escalating situation, but that’s not how Newark police officials interpreted it.
"The majority of Newark Police Division officers are proud and hardworking," Ambrose said. "The Newark Police Division and the citizens of Newark deserve better than what was demonstrated by these officers. They had an opportunity, and an obligation, to help the suspect, who was acting irrationally, and they failed to do so. We should not confuse restraint with a lack of response. If they did not help themselves, then how can we expect them to help the citizens that they serve."
You can see the video of that incident below: