In life, context is everything. The Grand Rapids Police Department is now explaining their point of view of a viral video making the rounds.

The video shows the GRPD arresting a man in the wake of the stabbing incident this weekend at Stella's in the arena bar district. The scene appears chaotic, and a man is being roughly subdued by police officers. An officer is yelling and moving people away from the scene, when another officer takes down a woman and cuffs her.

 

When I first saw the video, which was posted to Facebook on Sunday, my first thought was, 'sure, that looked rough, but what happened leading up to it?'

Now the GRPD is giving their side of the story. In a statement on the GRPD Facebook page, the police explain the circumstances surrounding the event. Officers responding to the multiple stabbings at Stella's bar were greeted with a chaotic scene.

Multiple officers responded to the scene to try to keep the crowd back so medical professionals could tend to the victim. During these chaotic times, a 23 year old male who was covered in blood was located amongst the crowd. Officers who initially made contact with him reported that they were not sure if he was a suspect or another stabbing victim. When officers tried to stop him to find out, he fought with two officers, attempting to punch both of them in the face. He was taken to the ground by two officers and arrested. It was later determined that he did have a stab wound which required medical treatment. He was transported to the hospital where he was admitted with a non-life threatening wound.

 

There were three additional arrests made before officers were able to completely control the scene, all for Resisting and Obstructing an Officer. The first two are off camera, one of a 21 year old female who was repeatedly refusing to follow commands to back-up and eventually assaulted an officer knocking off his body worn camera. The second was a 22 year old male, again refusing to back up, taking a fighting stance with officers, and attempting to punch them. During this arrest, the body worn cameras of both officers were knocked off, one of which was stolen by the crowd.

 

The fourth arrest during this incident was the arrest seen on the cell phone video. This 24 year old male had charged at officers while they were trying to arrest the 21 year old female attempting to punch one of them. Several officers grabbed ahold of him to take him into custody, and in the process, the side mirror of the nearby cruiser broke off. It took numerous officers to take the individual to the ground, and as they did, the subject landed on one of the officers knocking off his body worn camera. Once the subject was on the ground, he continued to resist by not following commands, tensing up, and attempting to kick at officers near his feet. He was taken into custody and handcuffed without injury.

Police would like to have the body cam taken from the scene returned, and if you have any more information on the event, you are encouraged to call Detective Case Weston at (616) 456-3384, facebook messenger (@GrandRapidsPD), or Silent Observer at (616) 774-2345/silentobserver.org.