Four officers suspended from duty after allegedly beating a black music producer went before a judge in France on Sunday, one day after anti-police brutality protesters demonstrated against a bill restricting the filming of cops.
The police officers were suspended and detained by the National Police Inspectorate General after a video appeared to show them beating black music producer Michel Zecler. They are reportedly being investigated for “violence with a racist motive” and making false statements.
The officers faced a judge on Sunday, according to a source cited by AFP. This followed violent clashes on Saturday, as thousands of protesters took to the streets of Paris to demonstrate against police brutality and a bill that would restrict the sharing of video and images of cops.
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Images from the incident were first published by digital media outlet Loopsider and caused mass outrage. French President Emmanuel Macron even commented on them, saying they “shame us all.”
Video of the incident in question shows the officers trying to detain Zecler at Black Gold Studios in Paris, and beating him until others intervene and force them to leave. Images of Zecler after the altercation show him with bruises and stitches on his face and head.
“I thought it was my last day,” Zecler – who was not wearing a mask, which is required under current Covid-19 measures – told Loopsider about the incident. Zecler was accused of resisting arrest and even trying to take the officers’ weapons, which his lawyer has argued the video shows is clearly not true.
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