Black UVA Student Beaten And Bloodied By Police Over Alleged Fake ID

Another day, another SMH-worthy police brutality incident. A black student from the University of Virginia was brutally beaten by police after the student allegedly attempted to enter a bar with a fake I.D., according to ABC reports.

After 20-year-old Martese Johnson was denied entry in a bar on St.Patrick’s Day after allegedly attempting to enter with a fake I.D. (some Twitter accounts have denied these claims), Alcoholic Beverage Control agents arrested him. According to officials, Johnson’s injuries were sustained during his arrest.

A video shows Johnson being detained by agents and a bystander yelling, “His head is bleeding!” All the while Johnson is on the ground yelling, “I go to UVA you fucking racists!” Students who witnessed the incident take place explained that Johnson never resisted arrest. Those concerned students wrote a letter describing the officers as “animalistic” and “insensitive.” After the ordeal, Johnson needed 10 stitches.

The letter reads:

“After Martese was denied entry to the bar, he found himself suddenly flung to the ground. The brutish force used resulted in his head and bodily injuries. His treatment was unprovoked as he did not resist questioning or arrest. In confusion, with blood painting his face and creating a pool on the bricks of the corner, he yelled out for mercy. Though he lay bleeding and crying out, officers continued to hold him to the pavement, pinning him down, twisting his arm, with knees to his back until he was handcuffed.”

Johnson was later charged with public intoxication and obstruction of justice. According to the ABC agency, Johnson was treated for his injuries at UVA Hospital Emergency Department.

UVA held a rally in light of the incident, which Johnson attended. UVA’s president, Teresa Sullivan, said in a statement:

“The safety and security of our students will always be my primary concern, and every member of our community should feel safe from the threat of bodily harm and other forms of violence. Today, as UVA students, faculty, and staff who share a set of deeply held values, we stand unified in our commitment to seeking the truth about his incident. And we stand united in our belief that equal treatment and equal justice are among our fundamental rights under the law.”

Several other students, community members and the State also released statements of their own.

Watch video footage of the arrest below:

UPDATE [3/19/15]:
The Virginia government has called for an investigation on Johnson’s arrest. A statement from the Alcohol Beverage Control reads:

“Governor McAuliffe has requested that Virginia State Police conduct an independent investigation into the circumstances of the arrest, including use of force. Virginia ABC will provide whatever information or assistance is requested by Virginia State Police.”

Additionally, students and supporters protested against the incident in various areas on UVA’s campus. Social media has also heavily joined in on the protest with #BlackLivesMatter and #JusticeForMartese hashtags.


Photo Credit: Charlottesville Police