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Apopka police body cam footage to be included in use of force lawsuit


APOPKA, Fla. — Late November 2019, Apopka cops are called to a well-being check.

Jason Friend was playing music in his car in his driveway. Police say he was unresponsive to what they were asking him to do.

Just released body cam footage shows the incident getting physical as the officers take Friend out of his car. They tell him to stop what he's doing and eventually tase him.

Friend was initially accused of battering officers and resisting.

The incident has been seen recently by many on social media based on a neighbor's video.

Charges against Friend eventually dropped, and now he's filed a suit against Apopka Police.

"I was unresponsive, even the neighbor said over and over, he doesn't sit out here and play music. We've never seen him do this. Something is wrong," Friend said.

Friend said he was beaten, kneed and punched.

While the initial police report says Friend appeared intoxicated, he says he was suffering with PTSD and grieving the loss of his mom. He said he may have been having an episode of some sort.

“Oh, he was playing loud music, so we stomped him. I didn't hit, kick or punch them. I didn't know any of this until my neighbor gave me the video. I was unaware of the whole event until I was on the ground bleeding," Friend said.

"Take him out of his car, beat him and tase him, for doing nothing more than sitting in his car playing music at his home," Friend’s attorney, Mark NeJame, said.

WESH reached out to the Apopka Police Department.

They responded with an email saying they don’t comment on pending litigation.

© 2022, Hearst Television Inc. on behalf of WESH-TV

Source: Wesh 2

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