**WARNING: Some of our viewers may find the video disturbing**
LORAIN, Ohio– The Lorain police chief was joined by other city and religious leaders on Saturday to discuss a recent lawsuit accusing the department of excessive force.
Pele Smith, 30, filed a federal lawsuit against a Lorain police officer for using excessive force during his arrest in 2014. Video shows the officer slamming the man’s head against the cruiser, breaking the windshield. Smith was being arrested on drug charges and police said he tried to destroy evidence.
During Saturday’s news conference, Chief Cel Rivera thanked the community for holding his department accountable. He said he’s asked for a third-party review and submitted the case to the county prosecutor’s office.
The chief did not talk about specifics of the pending litigation, but felt it was important to give an update. Ward 6 Councilman Angel Arroyo Jr. added they are trying to be transparent without compromising the integrity of the investigation. The city’s mayor and safety director were out of town and not at the news conference.
Rivera said it’s painful to think his department may be associated with police incidents nationally.
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Article and Video Courtesy of WJW Fox 8 News Cleveland
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