Final Saturday round 2 a.m., a pair of deputies in a tiny California metropolis responded to a report of home violence at an condo complicated.
However as an alternative of discovering the 911 caller or their alleged suspect, the cops tased, pepper-sprayed and beat a Native American man and shot and killed his canine.
The disturbing encounter, captured in bystander video and physique cam footage launched by the Inyo County Sheriff’s Workplace, has sparked outrage and divided residents in Bishop, a metropolis of about 3,700 individuals close to the Nevada border.
George Barlow, 32, was at an empty fuel station on the Bishop Paiute Reservation when one of many Inyo County deputies first approached. The sheriff’s personal narrative of the incident reveals Barlow wasn’t even their suspect. “Whereas wanting within the space, the deputies seen a male topic throughout the road on the Chevron station, which was closed; the topic was agitated and yelling,” a press launch states.
On Monday, the sheriff’s workplace released physique cam footage of the surprising episode, which put Barlow within the hospital. (Warning: This footage contains photos of police beating Barlow and capturing his canine to dying.)
In line with cops, Barlow charged at a deputy, refused to observe instructions, and grabbed one deputy’s baton—all of which the body-cam footage backed up. However police additionally claimed that the canine, a pitbull, was shot after Barlow ordered it to assault, and there have been no audible instructions of that nature within the footage launched by police.
They’ve charged Barlow with crimes together with obstruction / resisting officers, threatening legal intent, assault with a lethal weapon non-firearm, violation of parole, and battery on a peace officer.
Footage of the incident launched by each cops and a bystander on social media appears to indicate the state of affairs wasn’t so clear minimize.
Inyo County District Legal professional Thomas Hardy advised The Day by day Beast the costs in opposition to Barlow haven’t been referred to his workplace. “It’s my understanding that the sheriff has an lively investigation into Mr. Barlow, but it surely has not been referred over,” Hardy mentioned.
Hardy is investigating the 2 deputies for potential crimes associated to extreme drive, nonetheless. “It’s our highest precedence proper now,” Hardy mentioned, including that he’s acquired quite a few emails from residents demanding accountability. “Nevertheless it’s extra necessary to be thorough and correct than to be quick. That being mentioned, I hope we could have it wrapped up in just a few weeks as an alternative of some months.”
To Barlow’s household and supporters, the incident is one other reminder of what they view as regulation enforcement’s brutal remedy of Indigenous residents.
“My cousin George ‘match the outline’ and due to that he’s within the hospital on life assist and his canine is lifeless,” one member of the family wrote on Instagram and on a GoFundMe web page. “He was not the individual in query.”
Barlow “didn’t should be brutalized like this, no one does,” the relative added on the fundraising site, which has raised greater than $25,000 for Barlow’s medical payments and lawyer charges. “Legislation enforcement in Payahuunadü (the Owens Valley) has a historical past of brutalizing Native residents and we obtain little to no justice.”
One childhood buddy of Barlow’s, Lina Sandoval, described him as “the most important teddy bear” who had a smile on his face no matter what heartbreak he was going by way of, together with the lack of his mom not too long ago. “Regardless of his large measurement, he’s not aggressive,” Sandoval advised us. “That’s why that is so surprising and disappointing.”
“Folks in Bishop are attempting to justify what occurred as a result of supposedly the canine was attacking the officers,” Sandoval added. “The canine shouldn’t be seen within the video till the police are beating George.”
The Inyo County Sheriff’s Workplace’s 11 minute 41 second video of the incident exhibits the pitbull intervening and leaping up on the deputy as he tussles with Barlow, in addition to the deputy shouting, “I’m gonna shoot your canine.” However the footage didn’t clearly seize the canine biting the deputies, although police mentioned they “suffered canine bites.”
The video additionally contains audio of the 911 name that led deputies to the world. In it, a lady reviews an alleged home violence incident round 2 a.m. at an condo constructing on Tu Su Lane.
In line with a police assertion, the deputies didn’t discover the caller and went to the Chevron station throughout the road. One deputy noticed Barlow, who in response to police mentioned, “Can I kill you too,” earlier than charging at him. (Physique cam footage reviewed by The Day by day Beast does seem to seize Barlow saying, “Can I … you too,” although what precisely he’s saying from throughout the car parking zone is tough to make out.)
Authorities additionally confirmed the deputies then struck Barlow with their batons, however mentioned that was finished after two tasers weren’t efficient.
The second deputy additionally pepper-sprayed Barlow, police say, and he dropped the baton and walked off. Barlow was arrested after the deputies deployed a sheriff’s Ok-9 to pursue him.
Though the body-camera footage confirmed among the deputies’ claims concerning the encounter, it solely raised questions on different issues.
At one level in an officer’s body-cam video, Barlow’s arms have been within the air and he was standing shirtless, away from the cops, and yelling, “Assist” whereas a taser’s crimson laser marked his chest earlier than one of many deputies deployed it. The officer deployed the taser as Barlow turned to stroll away.
A video posted to social media that was captured by a bystander from throughout the road paints a murkier picture of the incident.
Within the social media video, Barlow will be seen on the bottom whereas officers kick him as he seems to grip certainly one of their batons and his canine runs in circles.
Questions additionally stay concerning the preliminary encounter between Barlow and the deputies that police say kicked off the violent chain of occasions.
Within the first body-cam launched by cops, a deputy will be seen approaching the fuel station pumps and yelling “Yo” to Barlow, who responds with “Hello” earlier than jogging nearer.
“Don’t run at me, bro,” the cop warns, as Barlow runs towards him. “Again up, you’re gonna get tased.”
“What would you like?” Barlow asks as he runs towards the deputy and raises his arms within the air. “What are you fucking with me for?”
From there, the cop deploys the taser and issues instantly escalate. On the level when Barlow’s canine is shot, it was close to Barlow, the footage exhibits.
The second deputy then grabs his German Shepherd police canine from a truck and chases after Barlow. “Assist me!” Barlow shouts after the police canine jumps at him and he falls to the bottom.
“Cease resisting! You’re below arrest!” one of many cops will be heard yelling. The pictures are too darkish to see, however Barlow’s screams will be heard together with the growling.
Police mentioned Barlow was transported to the hospital “with one canine chunk and a number of lacerations from the battle, and using taser darts and batons.”
Footage from a 3rd physique cam, from a Bishop Police Division officer, confirmed Barlow mendacity bare in a pool of blood whereas the cops advised him they have been making an attempt to render help.
Whereas Barlow’s situation is unclear, native radio station Sierra Wave printed a photograph of him with a respiratory tube within the hospital.
Barlow’s household didn’t return messages from The Day by day Beast in search of remark, however one relative posted to Fb Monday with an replace: “George had the tubes taken out!!! He’s respiratory on his personal with remedy as effectively… his voice is slightly raspy, most likely from the tubes, however I hear he’s in good spirits!!!”
On Tuesday, in response to the Sierra Wave, mates and relations demanded an investigation at a gathering of the Inyo County Board of Supervisors.
“What would you do if George Barlow was your son? The entire neighborhood is your loved ones,” mentioned one individual recognized as Roger Barlow.
The board chair replied that “legally we will’t focus on” the matter. Sheriff Jeff Hollowell then advised the group that his company employed an impartial agency to conduct an investigation, which ought to take about three weeks.
Sandoval advised The Day by day Beast it’s “completely absurd” that Barlow continues to be dealing with costs.
“He wasn’t a menace to anybody, he didn’t deserve this,” she mentioned.
WARNING: GRAPHIC VIDEO
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