Body camera video released Thursday shows an unarmed 75-year-old man being Tased by a former Colorado police officer after authorities showed up at his door.
The footage, released by Michael Clark’s lawyer Sarah Schielke, shows Idaho Springs Police Department officers arriving at Clark’s home on May 30 after a confrontation with a neighbor. Clark answers the door to the police and asks “What do you want?” (Warning: the video may be disturbing to some viewers.)
Clark isn’t shown in the video holding a weapon, which police called a “machete” in the footage but Schielke said was a “shark mouth sword.” Clark is instructed by police to put the weapon down, and he puts it on a shelf, according to the video.
Police then order him to get on the ground, to which Clark responds, referring to his neighbor: “No. They hit that wall so hard, I thought they were going to come through the wall.”
Clark is then Tased by former officer Nicholas Hanning inside the apartment before falling unconscious, the footage shows. Clark is then handcuffed and Hanning informs him that he’s accused of punching a neighbor, which Clark denies.
Clark was taken to a hospital and nursing care facility and suffered a “stroke, a burst appendix and hearing complications,” according to Schielke, The Associated Press reported.
Schielke told McClatchy News that the lawsuit is “imminent” and that Clark’s “health is declining.”
“How I was brutally attacked, and almost murdered ... has really affected me in a lot of ways,” Clark said in a news release. “The memory of how I was treated, and not just how I was treated by the police force, but also then after that by the district attorney, like I was the aggressor, that has severely affected me. Some people may wonder why I would be so set on the public release of these videos, when releasing them means that everyone I know is going to see me in my skivvies, stripped of my dignity, and assaulted in my own home.”
Hanning was fired earlier this month and faces a felony charge of “third-degree assault on an at-risk adult,” CBS Denver reported.
Idaho Springs Police Chief Nathan Buseck said in a statement on July 8 that the department “took decisive action to address this incident.”
“The Idaho Springs Police Department is a proud organization that holds itself accountable and holds all employees accountable for their actions. Our agency took decisive action to address this incident which included a thorough internal investigation along with immediately requesting an outside agency perform a criminal investigation,” Buseck said.