Akron cops taze and beat pinned down vet who’s arms they held

Spenn Dibabii’s Facebook video of Akron cops beating down U.S. military veteran Patrick King for walking on Para Avenue and not responding to their violation of his 4th Amendment rights may generate enough attention to get the long overdue federal investigation of Akron’s police department, the city prosecutor’s office and the municipal court.

AKRON, OH – The statement from Akron police regarding their armed violent attack on U.S. veteran Patrick King reads like a crime confession in preparation for a federal investigation and indictments of cops for conspiring to violate his civil rights under the “color of law.” 

Akron Mayor Daniel Horrigan would do well to study the U.S. Department of Justice’s investigation of Cleveland’s police department and see why calls for a federal investigation of the corrupt police department he oversees are justified and long overdue.  If Chief of Police Ken Ball evaluates the acts committed by the cops who beat King as an administrative offense instead of as federal “color of law” violations of his civil rights the city will be engaged in a conspiracy.

Captain Dave Laughlin’s statement to reporters is clear  that police did not articulate a reasonable suspicion of a violation of a local ordinance, state or federal law they could identify him as violating while walking along Para Avenue on Sunday, October 21st.

Laughlin affirmed that on scene cops used the “known drug area” excuse the U.S. Supreme Court rejected in Adams v. Williams 1972 that “an individual’s presence in a high crime area, standing alone, is not enough to support a particular suspicion of criminal activity.”

The police captain stated that on scene Akron cops claimed King “ingested a large amount of drugs” as another reason for their armed and violent interaction.  Laughlin’s statement did not, however, identify the type of drugs King is alleged to have ingested or how on scene cops knew what he placed in his mouth was drugs.


Laughlin further affirms that on scene cops  obstructed King’s 4th Amendment right to be free of unlawful government searches on the streets when they decided to seize him to conduct a search of the FBI and state of Ohio’s criminal records history databases.  Akron’s prosecutors have previously prosecuted cops for NCIC and LEADS misuse under R.C. 2913.04(C) and (D). 

It’s a 1st degree misdemeanor to use the NCIC and LEADS databases in ways that are not authorized by Ohio and federal laws.  Ohio instructs police in section 4501:2-10-03(B)(d) of the administrative code that “the primary purpose for LEADS is the protection of the officer on the street.” 

There’s no state or federal authorization to use either database to establish probable cause on the streets.  The database on the streets is used in connection with traffic stops connected to probable cause that is independently established without a computer; and for criminal investigations.  Officers on the street use it for their protection before they approach a motor vehicle stopped for another reason.

The FBI’s National Crime Information Center (NCIC) 2000 Manual under the heading “Data and Probable Cause” instructs police not to use the information in the federal government’s databases to establish “probable cause.” 

Congress through the Government Accounting Office (GAO) has warned the states that the criminal records history information on half the people whose names are stored in it is wrong.  Governor John Kasich has ordered the Ohio Highway Patrol to demand that local police and prosecutors get the information in the LEADS databases made accurate. 

There is no “probable cause” reason behind the charges connected to Patrick King’s arrest other than he was in a “known drug area.” The Supreme Court has rejected that as a reason for cops to seize and search someone.

Laughlin did not affirm if the on scene Akron cops who searched the NCIC and LEADS databases verified the warrant “hit” on King with the originating agency to learn if the information was accurate before they sought to initiate an arrest.  The warrant was from Cleveland and the clerk of court’s office that uploaded the information was closed on Sunday when Akron cops “seized” King.

The NCIC 2000 Manual instructed the on scene Akron cops under the heading “Data and Probable Cause” that “an NCIC hit alone is not probable cause to arrest.” 

Laughlin’s statement from the on scene cops is that King resisted all their unlawful violations of his 4th Amendment rights so they used to subdue him to arrest him. 

Akron Mayor Daniel Horrigan has no choice but to evaluate the video recording of Patrick King’s beating at the hands of armed and violent Akron cops as a criminal violation of law and not a violation of police department policies. He should also read the U.S. Department of Justice’s investigation of the Cleveland police department. There’s no difference between the departments.

In the Spenn Dibabii Facebook video of the Akron police officers’ violent attack on King, the female on scene cop is shown holding King’s arms while the male cop tazes him for not putting the arms she held behind his back.

Witnesses who recorded the video and watched the interaction are heard in the background shouting to the law enforcement officers they can’t do what they’re doing to King.  They affirm Laughlin’s own public statement that cops had no probable cause reason to seize him.  The witnesses said he was just walking on the sidewalk.  

Witnesses are clearly heard pointing out what’s obvious to any viewer that the female cop holding King’s arms made it impossible for him to put his hands behind him to justify the male cop tazing him.

When backup Akron cops arrive, and a large male cop straddles King’s torso and starts pounding at his pinned-down and completely-surrounded body with both fists, he’s heard telling him to “stop resisting” and then “stop moving.”

“This is why people hate y’all,” a witness says.  “This is why people run from the police.”

Laughlin’s statement did not explain how King could simply walk down the street minding his own business and end up being seized and searched by police without probable cause; and then end up with four criminal charges.  Resisting arrest under a state statute; and misrepresenting identity, drug abuse and drug paraphernalia under three local ordinances.  

Laughlin’s statement also omits why King is facing criminal charges instead of the violent and armed police officers who a video shows beating a man down because he exercised his 1st Amendment right to walk on a public street; and his 4th Amendment right to walk away from individuals masquerading as law enforcement officers who had no probable cause reason to question or seize him.

Rev. Gregory Harrison is the pastor of Antioch Baptist Church in Akron and a former member of the city’s police department.  He said it’s past due  for Akron’s police department to be criminally investigated by the U.S. Department of Justice.

Harrison joined other Akron ministers to ask for a federal investigation of Akron cop Donald Schismenos’ withholding audio-recorded evidence that would have helped innocent people the city’s police arrested. 

King appears to be one of the police department’s latest civil rights victims.

Eric Jonathan Brewer

Cleveland's most influential journalist and East Cleveland's most successful mayor is an East Saint Louis, Illinois native whose father led the city's petition drive in 1969 to elect the first black mayor in 1971. Eric is an old-school investigative reporter whose 40-year body of editorial work has been demonstrably effective. No local journalist is feared or respected more.

Trained in newspaper publishing by the legendary Call & Post Publisher William Otis Walker in 1978 when it was the nation's 5th largest Black-owned publication, Eric has published and edited 13 local, regional and statewide publications across Ohio. Adding to his publishing and reporting resume is Eric's career in government. Eric served as the city's highest paid part-time Special Assistant to ex-Cleveland Mayor Michael R. White. He served as Chief of Staff to ex-East Cleveland Mayor Emmanuel Onunwor; and Chief of Communications to the late George James in his capacity as the Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority's first Black executive director. Eric was appointed to serve as a member of the state's Financial Planning & Supervision Commission to guide the East Cleveland school district out of fiscal emergency and $20 million deficit. Former U.S. HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson told Eric in his D.C. office he was the only mayor in the nation simultaneously-managing a municipal block grant program. Eric wrote the city's $2.2 million Neighborhood Stabilization Program grant application. A HUD Inspector General audit of his management of the block grant program resulted in "zero" audit findings.

As a newspaper publisher, Eric has used his insider's detailed knowledge of government and his publications to lead the FBI and state prosecutors to investigations that resulted in criminal prosecutions of well-known elected officials in Ohio; and have helped realign Cleveland's political landscape with the defeat of candidates and issues he's exposed. Eric's stories led to the indictments of the late Governor George Voinovich's brother, Paul Voinovich of the V Group, and four associates. He asked the FBI to investigate the mayor he'd served as chief of staff for public corruption; and testified in three federal trials for the prosecution. He forced former Cuyahoga County Coroner Dr. Elizabeth Balraj to admit her investigations of police killings were fraudulent; and to issue notices to local police that her investigators would control police killing investigations. Eric's current work has resulted in Cuyahoga County Judge John Russo accepting the criminal complaint he guided an activist to file against 24 civil rights-violating police officers in the city he once led for operating without valid peace officer credentials. USA Today reporters picked up on Eric's police credentials reporting from his social media page and made it national.

Eric is the author of of his first book, "Fight Police License Plate Spying," which examines the FBI and local police misuse of the National Crime Information Center criminal records history database. An accomplished trumpet player and singer whose friendship with Duke Fakir of the Four Tops resulted in his singing the show's closing song, "Can't Help Myself": Curtis Sliwa of New York's Guardian Angels counts Eric among his founding chapter leaders from the early 1980's role as an Ohio organizer of over 300 volunteer crime fighters in Cleveland, Columbus and Youngstown, Ohio. For his work as a young man Eric was recognized by Cleveland's Urban League as it's 1983 Young Man of the Year.

Known in Cleveland for his encyclopedic knowledge of government and history, and intimately-connected with the region's players, every local major media outlet in Cleveland has picked up on one of Eric's stories since 1979. There is no mainstream newspaper, television or radio outlet in Cleveland that does not include an interview with Eric Jonathan Brewer in its archives over the past 40 years.