HUMBLE, TX (KTRK)– While Humble Police are grappling with whether an officer’s dismantling of a bar patron was unjustifiably excessive, the department’s bodycam footage, as well as previously unreleased surveillance video and 911 audio recorded that night, illustrate a different perspective the encounter.
Last week, Eyewitness News reported on Chris Hanna’s allegations of police brutality when he was arrested outside a bar on June 24. Hanna claimed through his attorney, Todd Overstreet, that Officer John Cox handcuffed him “almost like an uppercut” with his hand “almost like brass knuckles.”
Cox was then responding to reports of a shootout Hanna committed in self-defense after a fight with two “bikers.”
ORIGINAL STORY: A humble man claims police brutality was caught on surveillance video during the arrest
Hanna was then placed in a patrol vehicle, bleeding and later bandaged. Hanna admitted she didn’t remember the takedown but said he was conscious when he was pinned down.
Surveillance video of the pub and Hanna’s booking photo, which shows him draped in first-aid gear, is the evidence presented by Hanna’s lawyer, ABC13, in his allegation of police brutality.
Humble Police said last Thursday that no official complaint had yet been filed in the case.
The bodycam video
On Monday, Humble Police offered an insight into Hanna’s incarceration from Officer Cox’s perspective.
In body camera footage recording the incident, Hanna tells Cox that he opened fire after a couple of bikers fought him with a chain. Hanna claims that the fight was due to “seeing something he shouldn’t have seen”.
Hanna also admits to having been drinking before the confrontation.
Hanna then shows Cox where he dropped his pistol and where he fired the two shots, each at different parts of the parking lot.
The bikers involved were not present during the questioning.
In this part of the exchange, Hanna is open and cooperative, if slightly slurred, without showing any signs of combativeness.
Cox then instructs Hanna to sit and wait while he talks to a woman in a nearby car, who informs the officer that Hanna pointed a gun at her friend.
Cox then goes to Hanna and explains that he is locked up. That would be the starting point for the widespread surveillance camera footage.
cox: “I will go ahead and arrest you.”
Hannastanding and with hands up: “No, no, no, no. Am I under arrest?”
Cox, holding Hanna’s right wrist with his left hand: “I’m going to detain you. Settle down.”
Cox then appears to push Hanna, causing Hanna’s head to hit the ground.
The officer then warns Hanna to calm down as Hanna again asked if he was under arrest.
“I’m not resisting,” Hanna yells as his hands are placed behind his back and another officer helps him. “I haven’t done anything!”
cox: “I told you to turn around, son.”
Hanna: “I just asked one question… What am I doing wrong?”
Cox then explains that he is holding Hanna “for my safety” while Hanna is brought into the patrol unit.
Statement by the police after publication of bodycam recordings
Humble Police Chief Ken Theis gave an update on the state of the case within the department:
The Humble Police Department is conducting an internal investigation into the incident, Officer Cox remains on duty at this time. The humble police agency has no additional explanation.
In an earlier statement, Theis said Hanna’s injuries were a result of fighting with the other men. This statement reads in full:
“At approximately 2:30 a.m. on June 24, 2022, Officer John Cox was responding to reports of a disturbance at a local bar. Upon arrival, Officer Cox confronted an apparently intoxicated man in the parking lot who claimed to have been involved in a physical altercation with what he described as “two bikers” who began “slapping him in the face.”
The suspect had obvious injuries to his face and head. The suspect then admitted to shooting the two men he was fighting with at least twice with a firearm. After securing the firearm, Officer Cox moved to restrain the suspect, whereupon the suspect backed away from the officer and refused to turn and put his hands behind his back. Knowing that the suspect had admitted to possessing and firing a firearm earlier in the evening, as the suspect continued to try to put distance between himself and Officer Cox, the officer brought the suspect to a patch of grass and laid him without further ado incident handcuffs on.
At no time did the officer hit the suspect and it was determined that the suspect’s injuries were caused solely by the altercation in which he was involved prior to Officer Cox’s arrival. Officer Cox then spoke to a witness who stated the suspect also pointed his firearm at her, leaving her fearful for her life after shooting at the two men on the motorcycles. The suspect was charged with grievous bodily harm as he threatened to grievously harm the witness by pointing a firearm in her direction and admitted firing a firearm at two people. We reviewed the information to launch an investigation into the incident but have not received a formal complaint from the suspect or anyone else.”
Video shows filming; 911 call audio shared
Other pieces of media were released Monday along with the bodycam footage, including what appears to have been Hanna’s confrontation with the bikers.
WATCH THE VIDEO: Modest PD Brutality Claim: Shooting Captured Before Rough Detention
Five 911 audio recordings with calls from four witnesses and Hanna also surfaced.
In his call, Hanna claims that “he witnessed something he shouldn’t have seen” and that he was “assaulted,” prompting him to get his firearm from his truck.
However, the witnesses’ calls describe slightly frantic reports of a man with a gun outside Lloyd’s Bar. A woman tells a dispatcher that Hanna had a fight with her friend, adding that Hanna was “really drunk” and “bleeding.” .
On another call, the dispatcher instructs a caller in the bar to lock the doors.
Eyewitness News is reaching out to Hanna and his attorney for a response in light of the newly released footage. We are waiting for an answer.
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https://abc13.com/chris-hanna-humble-pd-bar-shooting-video-bodycam/12072407/ Modest allegation of police brutality: Officer John Cox’s bodycam captures interaction with gunman Chris Hanna before the rough arrest