Lynn woman facing charges amid investigation into video that showed officer repeatedly punching her
A Lynn woman is facing charges amid a use-of-force investigation into a cell phone video that showed an officer repeatedly punching her during a recent arrest after she allegedly refused to comply with police.
Jessica Wagle, 39, has been charged with assault and battery on a police officer, resisting arrest, and disorderly conduct, according to the Lynn Police Department.
Boston 25 News received video of the officer punching the woman in the head multiple times. In response to questions about the matter, Lynn police released the full body camera video of the incident. Investigators are now trying to determine if that use of force went too far.
It all started after Wagle was told to leave the rooming house on High Street, but she refused. So, police were called in to help, and then it escalated from there.
The video, taken from inside the rooming house, shows an officer striking Wagle four times. But police claimed that’s not the whole story and released eight minutes of body camera footage to show what led up to the incident.
In the body camera video, Wagle is seen standing in the room and police ask repeatedly for her to step out. After a few minutes of not complying, police go into the room and tell her she is under arrest for two outstanding warrants. When they try to put handcuffs on her, she begins to resist. A struggle between Wagle and the officers then spills into the hallway. They then used pepper spray, but Wagle still managed to kick the officers and attempt to bite another. That’s when the officer is seen striking her.
“Then they threw her,” a witness told Boston 25 News. “He literally threw her on the floor when I heard her head had hit the floor.”
Another witness said, “Brutality of that sort is just unacceptable.”
Boston 25 News Security Analyst Dan Linskey, who’s trained law enforcement on use of force in 44 states and countries, says as tough as this encounter is to watch, he does not believe it is an example of police brutality.
“It didn’t look like they were full force as hard as the officer could punch,” Linskey said. “They looked like they were distraction-airy strikes trying to get the individual in custody.”
Lynn police also released a statement saying preliminary findings show officers acted within the department’s use-of-force policy based on Massachusetts police training standards.
Lynn Mayor Jared Nicholson also released a statement saying the city will continue to offer full transparency in this investigation.
Wagle was slated to appear in Lynn District Court on Thursday but that hearing has been pushed back to a later time.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.
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