In June, officer Vincent Cosom of the Baltimore Police Department became angry when 32-year-old Kollin Truss did not show him the respect that he felt he deserved and viciously attacked him before placing him under arrest on charges of assault, resisting arrest, disorderly conduct and alcohol intoxication.
Police presented the case to the state’s attorney’s office which threw the charges out three days later.
Now Truss has brought a $35 million suit against the officer and the department. Attorney, Tony Garcia, who represents Truss in the case said that he expects that a judge will probably cut the amount requested to the $5 million range.
With the filing, a police surveillance video has surfaced which shows clearly that Cosom’s report of the incident was false. While he claimed in his report that when he approached to arrest Truss, he went into a fighting stance, the video shows that Truss was looking down when Cosom rushed at him and began to savagely beat him without provocation.
Police Commissioner Anthony Batts told reporters at a press conference that he had not seen the video until the filing of the suit.
“Much like the public, I’m shocked, I’m outraged, I’m disgusted by what I saw by an employee of the Baltimore City Police Department,” Batts said.
Batts may not have been aware of the video, but it is clear that others in the police department were aware of it and had closed ranks around Cosom to protect him. The video was flagged by a police surveillance operator on the night that the incident took place and an internal affairs investigators had seen the footage.
Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake issued a statement saying:
“I am deeply disgusted by the images I saw in this video. [Cosom’s] conduct was shameful and not worthy of the sworn obligation every officer takes to serve and protect city residents.”
Cosom is on administrative leave while the incident is being investigated, drawing his full base salary of more than $1,170 per week.
Commissioner Batts said that Internal Affairs has been investigating the case, but that they have been too slow to react to the information. He said that when the prosecutor informed a middle manager, more aggressive action should have been taken to let higher-ups know about it and that Cosom should have been relieved of duty immediately.
Watch the video below from WJZ-TV.