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Franklin Township Officer Placed On Leave After Kicking Suspect In Head


A Franklin Township officer has been placed on administrative leave after a video emerged on social media showing him kicking a restrained suspect in the head.

A video from user @j_tennyson_ posted early on Wednesday morning shows one officer pinning a man on the ground while another comes over and kicks the man in the head. As of Thursday, the video has been retweeted almost 8,000 times, and liked over 9,000 times as of Thursday.

"I don't care what this dude did, there is no justifiable reason for what the cop did," wrote @j_tennyson_, who told media that his mother took the video from their house on Sullivant Ave.

According to Franklin Township Police Chief Byron C. Smith, the incident emerged from a "police involved vehicle pursuit." A police report obtained by WOSU identified the suspect as Anthony Foster Jr., 18. Foster was identified as being white.

"During the coarse [sic] of the investigation a video surfaced showing possible officer misconduct," Smith said in a statement. "The involved officer has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation. This department will not tolerate officer misconduct."

According the police report, officers stopped Foster's car because it did not have vehicle registration, but Foster apparently fled and "continued driving recklessly," hitting several cars. The report says Foster rammed an officer's car, and the officer removed Foster from the car by grabbing the back of his neck and hair.

The report does not mention the kicking incident. The officer involved has not been named.

A spokesperson for the department said Smith is discussing the incident with the Fraternal Order of Police.

This is the second viral incident of a Columbus-area officer kicking a suspect in the head. Last July, officer Zachary Rosen was fired for using "unreasonable" force after a cell phone video showed him kicking Demarko Anderson.

Chief Kim Jacobs said the action was an "untrained technique" and recommended a three-day suspension, but Public Safety director Ned Pettus instead chose to fire Rosen.

Rosen was reinstated in March after the FOP appealed the decision.