Video of light rail station arrest sparks online controversy

Video of a man getting tased by police at a Light Rail station raises questions. (Oct. 27, 2016)

A cellphone video of Sacramento Police using a Taser on a man at the 13th street light rail station is circulating on social media. 

Golden Smith and his girlfriend were taking the light rail to Cosumnes River College where Smith goes to school.

Regional transit police said officers have been checking every rider to make sure their fares were paid. When they asked Smith to show his ticket, police say he kept walking. It turns out Smith did pay for his ticket, but police found out he had a notation on his parole record. Smith said they tried to cite him for delaying them from their duties and he refused to sign. When they tried to detain him and grabbed his arm, he started swinging.

In jail, Smith says he was swinging in self-defense.

"I was trying to break free. There was four of them. I don't even know. I was expecting them to rush me, because they threw my girl to the ground. They didn't tase her," Smith said. "I felt something more sinister than them just trying to detain me and throw me in jail. I can't really remember because my adrenaline was going. I was scared for my life."

Captain Norm Leong with Regional Transit Police Services said they have been checking everyone, but Smith says he didn't see anybody else being checked and felt he was being targeted.

Smith admitted to having a criminal record, but said he has been trying to get his life back together and that's why he was so upset when they tried to detain him on his way to school.

Smith was arrested for delaying officers from their duties and for resisting arrest. His girlfriend was also taken to jail but released with a citation.

It is policy to launch an internal investigation whenever police use a Taser. There were cameras around the light rail station that hasn't been released yet.

"The reality of policing today is everyone has a cellphone," Leong said. "When officers are engaged with a resistive subject, it doesn't ever look pretty, but it is our review to see if policies were followed, and it's the ideal way we want police to interact with people."

Copyright 2016 KXTV


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