Video released in alleged police assault case
The lawyer for a man who claims he was assaulted by a Vancouver police officer has released a video to CTV News of the incident.
Jason Tarnow says it proves his client, Justin Wachtel, was an innocent bystander when the officer came "full steam" and cross checked Wachtel in the face.
The security video shows Wachtel outside the Regal Beagle bar on West Broadway last August.
Tarnow says Wachtel was standing on the sidewalk after the bar closed, watching a police officer across the street.
Police say Sgt. Darcy Taylor was the first on the scene after receiving a call about a fight.
But Tarnow says Taylor was the only one being violent.
Tarnow says Taylor got out of his car, crossed the street and used his baton to push people in the back and hit them in the back of the legs.
Tarnow says his client was just standing on the sidewalk watching what was going on when the officer sprinted at him and checked him in the face, knocking him to the ground.
Tarnow says the officer then pushes another man and then lunges at another person who raises a bicycle to defend himself.
On Monday, Vancouver police said Taylor had been charged with assault with a weapon.
The 20-year veteran is now on desk duty.
Tarnow says if the alleged assault had been committed by a civilian, and there was video evidence, charges would have come much more quickly.
He said he would prefer a civilian body investigate police actions.
Vancouver police officials say it was their decision to recommend a charge against Taylor.
Taylor is set to appear in court on Jan. 14.
With a report from CTV British Columbia's Leah Hendry