A video of a Houston police officer beating a homeless man was released Thursday afternoon more than a week after the two members of law enforcement involved were suspended for the apparently unprovoked attack. While both officers participated in the beating, the video shows one of the officers in particular landing repeated vicious hits to the unarmed homeless man's head and body using what appears to be a baton.
The officers, identified by local news outlet WKHO as Daniel Reynoso and Jairus Warren, were suspended Sept. 15, one day after the incident at a train station was caught on video surveillance footage. The Houston police department originally said it would not release the footage but pressure from social justice groups including the local Black Lives Matter chapter may have compelled the department to have second thoughts.
The below video of the incident contains graphic, violent imagery. Please view it below at your discretion.
The homeless man, Darrell Giles, was arrested and charged with trespassing before all charges were later dropped.
A subsequent investigation was opened as Police Chief Vera Bumpers apologized to Giles, 31.
Warren appeared to be the clear aggressor in the video, which shows the officer approaching Giles, who was sitting on the train platform at the time of the confrontation. The repeated blows left Giles writhing in apparent pain.
Both Warren and Reynoso were suspended without pay and charged with using excessive force, CW39 reported. Warren would later resign before he was officially fired. It was not immediately clear what prompted the beating.
Black Lives Matter in Houston had originally given police an ultimatum of releasing the video within a week of the beating, while police said they would not release the video until the investigation was complete, the New York Daily News reported. It was not immediately clear why police hedged on its decision and released the footage.
Warren and Giles are both black.
The footage was released amid an ongoing national conversation about police brutality, which was under scrutiny once again following the shooting death of an unarmed black motorist in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and the shooting death of an allegedly armed black man in Charlotte, North Carolina.
This is a developing story.