Florida officer ‘relieved of duty’ after video shows him hitting woman

A Florida police officer who beat up a woman, apparently at Miami International Airport, was “relieved of his duty,” the Miami-Dade Police Director said Wednesday.

Video of the incident was shared on Twitter Wednesday night by Billy Corben, producer of the “Cocaine Cowboys” documentaries and a critic of police tactics.

In the video, the woman teases and argues with the officer and approaches him before he hits her.

“Don’t step on me, really,” she says. “What do you want to do?”

After the hit, the officer declares, “She hit me on the head.”

It was not immediately clear when the confrontation occurred. Corben’s post appears to show video from a screen that plays back images from the police corps camera.

No one in the video has been publicly identified.

Airport representatives referred their queries to the Miami-Dade Police Department.

Police Director Alfredo “Freddy” Ramírez III initially indicated on Twitter that more than one officer had been removed from service.

However, Detective Álvaro Zabaleta later clarified by email that “only ‘one’ officer was relieved of duty.”

In a revised statement, Ramírez said:

“I am shocked and angered by a body camera video I just saw involving one of our officers. I immediately launched an investigation and ordered that the officer involved be released from duty. Actions such as these undermine the hard work we have invested.” in our community and it makes my heart break for our community and for the vast majority of our officers who dedicate their lives to serving our County. “

He said the matter was under investigation and that he had invited Miami-Dade County Florida State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle to join the investigation.

“This will not continue and I assure our community that any officer who acts in this vain will have to be held accountable,” said Ramírez.

Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Giménez called the incident “appalling” and “unnecessary.”

“It is excessive and unnecessary use of force. That is NOT what our @MiamiDadePD are trained to do,” he tweeted.

Suzanne Ciechalski contributed