Shocking surveillance footage shows Calgary cop slamming a handcuffed black woman face-first to the floor
Judo shoulder throw by Police Constable Alex Dunn broke the Smack down broke and breaking Dalia Kafi’s nose, her face bloodied
Police Staff Sgt. Gordon Macdonald testified his colleague’s actions were the ‘worst use of force’ he had seen in his 30-year career
Calgary PC Alex Dunn was charged with assault causing bodily harm over the incident during the arrest of Dalia Kafi in December 2017
Kafi, 26 at the time, was arrested in Calgary, in the western Canadian province of Alberta, over allegedly breaching a court-ordered curfew
The footage shown at Dunn’s trial Monday shows the police officer flipping Kafi to the ground in a ‘judo-style throw’ and her face is seen bouncing off the concrete as blood pooled around her
He said he could hear the black woman’s bones crack as her face hit the ground
He said Kafi had not been aggressive or threatening toward the officers
Despite being charged with assault, Dunn has not been fired from the force
Dunn was suspended with pay for a year and is now in an administrative role
Shocking surveillance footage submitted in a Canadian courtroom shows a police officer slamming a handcuffed black woman face-first to the floor, breaking her nose in what a fellow officer has described as the ‘worst use of force he has seen in 30 years’.
Police Constable Alex Dunn was charged with assault causing bodily harm over the violent incident that took place during the arrest of Dalia Kafi back in December 2017 in Calgary, in the western Canadian province of Alberta.
Dunn is currently standing trial for the alleged assault but has not been fired from the force and is currently working in an administrative role.
Video played at his trial Monday shows the police officer flipping Kafi to the ground in a ‘judo-style throw’ causing her face to bounce off the concrete and leaving her lying in a pool of blood.
The shocking footage of the incident was shown to the court this week and provincial court Judge Michelle Christopher agreed to release it to members of the media.
It shows the officer approaching Kafi, 26 at the time, who is stood in handcuffs with her back against the wall inside a police arrest processing facility.
Dunn reaches up to Kafi’s head and tries to pull off the headscarf she is wearing. Kafi tries to lean away from him but Dunn yanks it off her head.
The cop then forcefully hurls her to the ground face first in one swift motion with her face visibly bouncing off the ground.
Dunn can be seen taking a hold of Kafi’s wrists that are handcuffed behind her back and her arms are held in the air as she lies still on the ground for a moment.
Kafi is seen stirring slightly while Dunn continues to hold her arms and look down at her on the ground for several seconds making no motion to check her injuries.
Another male officer then walks over about 15 seconds later and Dunn steps away. The officer helps Kafi to her knees and blood spatters can be seen along the floor from the alleged victim’s face.
Another two male officers emerge in the frame and one is seen putting on medical gloves.
There is no audio in the footage.
Kafi was taken to hospital where she needed stitches in her lip and underwent surgery for a broken nose.
Calgary police Staff Sgt. Gordon Macdonald testified his colleague’s actions were the ‘worst use of force’ he had seen in his 30-year career and said he could hear the black woman’s bones crack as her face struck the ground.
‘There’s only one type of sound when somebody’s bone hits the floor and that’s what I heard,’ he said from the witness box, according to CBC.
‘I advised [Dunn] that it was the worst use of force that I had seen,’ said Macdonald.
Macdonald, who was the commanding officer at the arresting unit, said Kafi was ‘flinching back’ from Dunn when he hurled her face-first in a ‘judo-style throw’, answering ‘no’ when asked if Kafi had acted in a way that would have justified the use of force.
He said the black woman was complaining about her arrest but was in no way threatening or aggressive toward any of the officers.
He said he feared the worst for Kafi after seeing and hearing the assault and called paramedics.
Macdonald said it was standard practice for the arresting officer to accompany persons in police custody to the hospital. However, he made the decision that it was not appropriate for Dunn to remain in the 26-year-old woman’s presence.
Dunn is currently standing trial for the alleged assault but has not been fired from the force and is currently working in an administrative role
The alleged assault took place in December 2017 when Dunn arrested Kafi over allegedly breaching a court-ordered curfew.
Kafi said she had been to a friend’s house braiding hair on the night of December 12 when she realized she was out past her curfew of 10 p.m. to 6 a.m..
She told the court a friend was driving her home when they were pulled over for turning on a yellow light.
Kafi said she gave cops her sister’s name at first because she was violating her curfew.
She then admitted her real name to Dunn and was arrested, handcuffed and taken to the arrest processing unit.
She said she was told to stand against a wall to have her photo taken when the incident took place.
The Kafi told the court she passed out for a moment after striking her head off the ground, coming round to realize her face was covered in blood.
The victim’s mother let out a guttural noise and left the courtroom after she saw the disturbing footage of the alleged assault on her daughter Monday, CBC reported.
Dunn was charged with assault after concerns were raised by colleagues and an internal investigation was launched.
He was suspended with pay for a year while awaiting trial but, after delays due to COVID-19, he has been allowed to return to work in ‘non-operational functions,’ Calgary police said.
Ahead of the trial, an out-of-town judge and prosecutor were been brought in to handle the case due to the potential of conflict-of-interest posed by the arraignment of a Calgary officer who is part of this city’s justice system.
Dunn testified in his own defense, that while handcuffed behind her back – with one cuff on her wrist and the other sliding up near her elbow, Kafi was able to reach up and grab his hand, which was on her shoulder.
Defense attorney Wilson says his client feared for his safety and needed to do a “dynamic takedown.”
Dunn had testified that he didn’t mean to throw Kafi on the ground face-first. He he didn’t feel there were other safe options that would prevent Kafi from potentially attacking him.
Prosecutor Pollard argued that Dunn’s account of what happened “defies physics, it defies anatomy, it does not reconcile with reality.”
“There is no contortion or movement that would even begin to allow for that possibility,” said Pollard. “None of this happened, it couldn’t have happened.”
Pollard also reminded the judge that one witness, a senior officer with 30 years policing experience, said he saw no reason for Dunn’s “judo-style throw.”
Dunn’s attorney Cory Wilson told the court that Kafi “is simply not to be believed” and “Constable Dunn’s evidence must be believed.”
He pointed out inconsistencies in her testimony and evidence that was contradicted by other witnesses. For example, Kafi said she was mumbling to herself while another witness testified she was being loud and belligerent.
A date for the verdict will be set in November.
The police internal disciplinary process, which will be completed after the trial, will also determine if Dunn’s use of force was reasonable and what disciplinary action, up to dismissal, should be taken.
‘To ensure the court process is not unfairly influenced, we are limited in regard to completing our internal disciplinary process until the court process is finished,’ police said in a statement.
‘In general terms, police officers are trained to de-escalate conflict and to use the least amount of force necessary to safely resolve a situation.
‘We expect them to follow the law, our policies and our training.’