Shocking video footage shows New Jersey police officer punching bikini-clad woman in the head; IA inquiry under way
UPDATE: The officers involved in the incident are now on administrative duty amid an internal affairs investigation that the department says will be "full and thorough." The announcement of an investigation, made by the Wildwood police department on Sunday night, follows footage of a disturbing arrest on a beach that went viral. The Professional Standards Unit of the Cape May County Prosecutor's Office will assist with the investigation.
The Memorial Day weekend started in horror for many who were in a New Jersey beach when an unsettling footage of a bikini-clad girl getting punched by a police officer emerged on social media, reported the New York Post.
Two deputies are seen struggling to take control of a woman in the 54-second footage as a child cries in the background and one of the officers yells, “Stop resisting!”
As the video starts, one of the officers punches the distraught woman twice in the head amid the chaos as she struggles face down in the sand. He then uses his forearm to grab her neck and flip her over.
Later in the video, she is heard screaming, “You’re not allowed to hit me like that! ” and “I didn’t do anything wrong!” as officers continue to hold her down and proceed to handcuff the young woman.
"I'm not resisting. I didn't do anything wrong," Weinman is heard shouting as she kicks her legs at the officers.
Viewers can see a third officer trying to keep other beachgoers away from the scene of the arrest.
Twitter user @HewittLexy, who posted the video said it was recorded in Wildwood, NJ at 4.11 pm on Saturday, wrote, “I was sleeping on the beach and I woke up to this... I can’t believe it..”
As of late Sunday afternoon, the clip was viewed over 2 million times on Twitter.
The same footage was reposted on Facebook by a certain Philadelphia woman who identified herself as the center of the commotion, Emily Weinman, who said that she did nothing wrong.
The woman wrote that she was at the beach with “my daughter, her father, and friend." Her post on Facebook has garnered over 110,000 views as of the moment.
As Weinman is being arrested, her 18-month old daughter is seen being held by her father.
Weinman, who went to the beach with her family and a friend, gave a lengthy description of what she says happened on Facebook.
According to her, the brouhaha started when the officers approached them on their four-wheeler, asking her and her friend for their ages as there was alcohol near them and they seemed to appear underage.
"I had alcohol, it’s Memorial Day weekend and 90 percent of people are underage drinking on the beach, without a doubt," she wrote.
However, the couple decided to cooperate with the deputies and revealed their ages before taking the breathalyzer test.
"It came back negative. I told them I wasn’t drinking and the alcohol was clearly closed/sealed, which the cops seen," she wrote on Facebook.
As Weinman walked a little away from the cops, to make a phone call, she says that one of them followed her. According to her account, the officers wouldn't budge from where they were sitting.
"I asked them don’t they have something better to do as cops than to stop people for underage drinking on the beach, saying to that there’s so much more serious stuff going on... the cop said, 'I was gonna let you go but now I’ll write you up' and he asked my name."
Weinman said that she didn't "do anything wrong and anything could’ve been written down on that paper so I wouldn’t give it to him."
Although she told the cops that she was at the beach with her young daughter, they told her that they were going to arrest her anyway.
"He told me he’s arresting me and started coming towards me to put handcuffs on me. I cautiously was backing up from him (facing him) and yelled for my daughter's father," Weinman wrote.
She said that she "tripped and fell and the cop tackled me to the ground and smashed my head into the sand."
As soon as her head was pummeled to the sand, Weinman said she blacked out. Immediately after, she tried to get up and push the officer off of her.
"That's when he head locked me by putting his arm around my neck, punched on me in my head and then he head locked me again but this time choking me, I was gasping for air," Weinman claims.
While admitting that she should've simply revealed her name to avoid the scuffle, she claimed that "the whole situation was iffy and I didn’t trust it."
“Honestly, I can say if I took even a sip, then I would’ve gave them my information and called it a day; I’m underage, so I know better,” she wrote.
“But this whole situation was handled wrongly and blew out of proportion all because these pigs didn’t do their jobs the way they were TRAINED to do so.”
She even complained that the officers didn't bother to take the beer that was next to her. She said that they were just "there to stir the pot."
According to NJ.com, which first reported the video, the Mayor's office did not immediately respond to calls for comment, while the Wildwood Police Department said no one would be able to comment until after the holiday.
Officials confirmed that the video took place on a beach near East Schellinger Avenue.