A Fairfax County Police Officer has been charged with assault following video of a recent arrest in Virginia June 5. The officer appears to repeatedly use a Taser on a disoriented man. For many, it quickly became another case of a white officer abusing a black man, with eerily similar visions of the recent death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin.

Fairfax County Officer Charged With Assault

The incident began when officers responded to a 9-1-1 call. The report described a man “walking int he street shouting that he needed oxygen,” reported Footage shows the man walking in the street as officers respond. He appears possibly under the influence, or struggling in some other manner.

After an officer and an EMT attempt to calm the man, Officer Tyler Timberlake comes from behind, deploying a Taser into the suspect. While it subdues him momentarily, the man eventually begins resisting again. Timberlake then appears to strike the man in the head with the Taser. He continues to deploy the Taser repeatedly into the man’s back, as blood runs down the man’s shoulder.

“The video also erodes the public’s trust of police officers, not only in Fairfax County but throughout this world,” Col. Edwin C. Roessler Jr. said Saturday at a press briefing on the incident. “These acts are unacceptable.”

Possibly most damning, the video shows Timberlake, for a moment, deploy the same knee pin tactic used by Chauvin on George Floyd.

“We are fortunate that this technology was in use in the region of the county within which this incident occurred,” said Fairfax County Commonwealth’s Attorney Steve Descano in a news briefing, reported “Without it, I fear we would have had an unfortunately narrow and somewhat distorted view of what happened in one of our own neighborhoods.”

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