Shocking moment a 66-year-old-dementia sufferer is kicked to the ground and beaten by police officer who tried to delete video from his police car camera
By Charles Walford
This is the shocking moment a police officer launches a vicious assault on a 66-year-old-dementia sufferer.
Officer Derek Middendorf then tried to cover his tracks by deleting the recording from his dashcam.
But it has been recovered by technicians in Florida, in the US, and now the attorney for victim Albert Flowers told Florida Today that his client was prepared to sue the city of Melbourne.
Melbourne City Attorney Paul Gougelman promised to review the video to see if the city had any responsibility to pay for Mr Flowers’ health care.
‘What I urge everybody to do is stand back and let the dust settle,’ Mr Gougelman said. ‘There is always more to the story. It’s always important to have a good working relationship in the community.’
Charges against Flowers were dropped by the Brevard County State Attorney’s Office after they learned about his dementia.
Middendorf was initially reprimanded for tampering with the recording device, but the city chose not pursue an administrative review at the time.
‘Information regarding the arrest of Albert Flowers was sufficient to indicate that an internal investigation was not warranted,’ Melbourne Police Chief Steve Mimbs said in a press advisory before the video was released. ‘Officer Derek Middendorf is a valued officer whose record since joining the department in 2005 reflects the fact that he has done a very good job for the city.’
Middendorf indicated in his report that he used force against Flowers after the man did not obey orders to stop moving toward him. The officer said he suspected Mr Flowers may have had a knife.
‘I had to react and protect myself in fear he was going to attack me,’ the report said. ‘Not knowing if he was still armed or not … I struck the defendant in the face to distract him.’
Mr Flowers’ dementia has worsened since returning home from the hospital, according to his granddaughter, Donna Jackson.
‘The family’s just upset by the whole thing,’Ms Jackson explained. ‘We are glad they dropped the charges. We just want to move forward.’
Officer beating man with dementia