GLENDALE HEIGHTS, Ill. — Video of the violent arrest of a Glendale Heights woman has been generating outrage on social media Tuesday, while police say it doesn’t show the whole story.
According to Glendale Heights police, officers responding to a domestic disturbance call on the 500 block of Gregory Avenue Monday arrived to find a couple arguing in a car. They say the woman behind the wheel appeared to be drunk, so they attempted to arrest her.
Kiara Brown lives at the Glendale Heights apartment complex where 23-year-old Tyler Russell was arrested Monday morning.
“I did hear the police pull up and I did see him just grab her and then he put her on the trunk of the car, that’s when I started recording because I heard her saying ‘why are you arresting me, why are you arresting me?’” Brown said.
Brown said the woman was in handcuffs when she saw an officer punch her in the head.
“As you could see in the video she was kneeled down and so the guy, he came over and pulled her shirt up for her, then you could see the officer just uppercut her,” Brown said.
Russell has been charged with aggravated battery and appeared in bond court Tuesday.
Police said when officers attempted to arrest Russell she fought them, biting one officer’s arm and head-butting him.
A person involved in the investigation provided an image to WGN which they said shows the officer’s wounds.
Both Russell and the officer were treated at a local hospital for injuries.
“I’m just in utter shock,” Tyler’s sister Jamie Russell said. “I can’t believe this would happen here. I know it’s happened. I’m not stupid to it. I knew this happened. But the fact that it happened in my own town and my sister, I never would have thought.”
The Glendale Heights officer has been placed on administrative duty, and the village said they have hired an outside firm to conduct a full third-party investigation.
In a statement, Village President Linda Jackson said the video is, “shocking and distressing to see.”
“We must preserve the trust of our community by being as transparent as possible,” Jackson said. “While the video is shocking to see, significant portions of the video are missing from the publicly available posts.”
After the village asked for anyone who witnessed the incident to come forward, Glendale Heights Spokesperson Lissa Druss said some residents stepped forward with additional videos.
“Already today we’ve had a couple of citizens come forward and offer video tape statements to add more context to the investigation,” Druss said.
Russell has been charged with aggravated battery with a $35,000 bond. Police say an investigation is still underway.