Ocean City police say 'officers are permitted to use force’ after video of violent arrests hits social media

Ocean City police released a statement saying their officers "are permitted to use force" after a video circulated on social media showing an arrest in which an officer could be seen driving his knee into a suspect while other officers restrained him on the ground.

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Police provided this comment at the end of a release that they say provides details on the incident:

We are aware of the social media videos circulating regarding this incident. Our officers are permitted to use force, per their training, to overcome exhibited resistance. All uses of force go through a detailed review process. The uses of force from these arrests will go through a multi-level examination by the Assistant Patrol Commander, the Division Commander and then by the Office of Professional Standards.

A number of other people were also arrested during the incident – which erupted after police reportedly enforced local vaping and smoking laws.

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According to police, the officers were on patrol on the Ocean City Boardwalk Saturday night around 8:28 p.m. when they noticed a large group of people vaping. After police told them vaping wasn’t permitted in certain areas of the Boardwalk, one of the men in the group reportedly began vaping again as they walked away.

Police say they approached the group again and asked at least one person for their identification.

WARNING: This video may be disturbing to some viewers

They say the man – who they later identified as Brian Everett Anderson, 19, of Harrisburg, Pa. - refused to show them his ID, and "became disorderly" as a large group gathered around.

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Anderson was released after police charged him with disorderly conduct, resist/interfere with arrest, second-degree assault and failure to provide proof of identity.

During the course of the incident, police arrested several other men from Harrisburg, charging them with a number of crimes, ranging from disorderly conduct to assault.

Jahtique Joseph John Lewis, 18; Khalil Dwayne Warren, 19; and Kamere Anthony Day, 19, were all released after being taken into custody and charged.