Video shows Ohio cop repeatedly punch suspect who allegedly stole hundreds of dollars worth of Pokémon cards

News & Politics

Video from a cellphone showed an Ohio police officer repeatedly punch a suspect who had allegedly tried to steal hundreds of dollars worth of Pokémon cards from a grocery store.

A redacted Westerville Division of Police report said that police were called to the Meijer grocery store on Sunday at about 10:28 p.m. by an employee about a theft in progress.

Employees said that 35-year-old Ernest Fields had walked in and placed packages of Pokémon cards into a plastic bag while ripping off security tags. A manager tried to keep him from leaving the store, but Fields ignored him and fled, according to the report.

Witnesses told police that Fields got into the passenger seat of a red Chevrolet Impala before police arrived. When an officer arrived the man exited the vehicle and allegedly tried to run away.

The report said that store cameras showed the man “pushing” the officer “and attempting to take him down.”

Two other officers arrived and said that the man was “actively resisting” being placed in handcuffs.

At about that time, a video recording shows the officer repeatedly punching the man in the head. The man appears to be saying “I’m sorry” during the beating.

The police report said that Fields “continued actively resisting our attempts to secure his hands by pulling his arms under his body and trying to roll over.”

Fields was transported to a hospital where he received treatment for his injuries. He was charged with felony assault but not charged with theft.

Investigators said they recovered the Pokémon cards as well as what they believed were drugs in the Impala vehicle.

While some on social media criticized the actions of the police, others opined that they were justified.

“Someone’s got to teach them. Mom and dad sure didn’t. Don’t steal things,” replied one social media user.

A similar story unfolded in July at a California mall when surveillance video captured two men trying to steal more than $2,000 of Pokémon items when one got a beatdown by one of the employees as they tried to get away. They dropped the cards but were able to flee the scene before police arrived.

Here’s the video of the altercation:

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