In January, Michigan police pulled over 57-year-old Floyd Dent for a routine traffic stop, and what happened next has become all too routine. Dent, who is black, was pulled from his car, tackled to the ground, beaten, and tased. “Police initially charged him with assault, resisting arrest, and possession of cocaine, insisting they found cocaine beneath the passenger seat of his Cadillac,” according to the Detroit Free Press, but a judge threw out the assault and resisting arrest charges upon reviewing the dashcam video from the officers’ car. On Tuesday, the longtime autoworker from Detroit appeared in court and pleaded not guilty to the felony drug charge.
The scene is an ugly one to be sure, with the number of cops swelling to nearly a dozen. Here’s how Dent described the altercation via the Free Press:
“He was beating me upside the head,” Floyd Dent, 57, told a horde of reporters and TV crews during a press conference at his attorney’s office Wednesday afternoon, as tears trickled his cheeks. “I was trying to protect my face with my right arm. I heard one of them say, ‘tase the M…F. ’ ”
“There was no hit by the (police) dog; no one found anything,” Dent’s lawyer told the Free Press. “Then all the sudden, you see the man reach into his pocket. And then it was obstructed by an officer, and all the sudden—bingo, he’s got a bag of cocaine. It doesn’t work that way.”