A man hired to improve race relations between police and the black community in Bristol, England was racially profiled, Tasered, and arrested by two officers. Video of Judah Adunbi’s encounter with two Bristol officers was recorded by his neighbor.
In the footage, 68-year-old Adunbi, had just returned from walking his dog when he was approached by officers and refused to give them his name.
“I’m not telling you my name, I’ve done no wrong,” Adunbi says in the video.
“We have no choice then but to arrest you,” replies a male officer who adds that they “believe” Adunbi may be another man who is wanted by police.
“Leave me alone and let me go about my business,” says Adunbi.
The neighbor recording the footage can be heard telling officers that Adunbi did nothing wrong and was merely walking to his house.
“Leave him alone, he just grabbed him,” the neighbor says as officers tussle with Adunbi while he tries to make it inside of his gate. Moments later, a female officers shoots a Taser at Adunbi’s face.
“Taser! Taser! Taser!” she says as Adunbi falls to the ground. “You’re being Tasered, alright?”
“That was totally unnecessary,” says the neighbor.
Adunbi told the Guardian that he thought he was going to die. “I felt that was it. Because of the way I fell back,” he noted. “The way I fell backward on the back of my head. I was just paralyzed. I thought that was it. I thought they were taking my life.”
He also didn’t like the way that officers approached him.
“At first, you don’t accuse someone of being someone else. You ask questions. The first thing they should have done is come to me in a polite manner. The way they approached me – they were accusing me. That is wrong.”
Adunbi, who is one of the founding members of Bristol’s independent advisor group started to “ improve the relationship between the Afro-Caribbean community” and police, remarked that the incident left a bad taste in his mouth.
“To know that one of the founder members of the independent advisory group which was created some years ago in order to improve the relationship between the Afro-Caribbean community and the constabulary and to be treated like this, it’s difficult,” he said.
The Avon and Somerset police, released a statement on the Taser incident, which is under investigation.
“After reviewing what happened, we voluntarily referred a complaint about this incident to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC),” said Chief Superintendent Jon Reilly. “Although we don’t have to refer an incident in which a taser has been discharged to the IPCC, we want to be as open and transparent as possible.”
Reilly added that he had a “constructive conversation” with Adunbi, who was “awarded compensation,” following a similar incident with police in 2009, though a “Taser was not deployed,” police said.
See the video below.