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ELPD addresses teen's allegation of police assault

February 14, 2020
<p>An East Lansing police car photographed on Aug. 23, 2019. </p>

An East Lansing police car photographed on Aug. 23, 2019.

Photo by Matt Zubik | The State News

East Lansing Police Department, or ELPD, released a statement Feb. 14 regarding an allegation of police misconduct during an incident that occurred last weekend.

The incident occurred early in the morning Sunday, Feb. 9 in the parking lot of 7-Eleven in downtown East Lansing. According to the statement issued by East Lansing Police Chief Larry Sparkes, ELPD has proactively initiated an internal investigation into the allegation of alleged excessive force during the incident.

The statement was released in response to a Facebook post by Uwimana Gasito that went viral last night. In his post, Gasito mentioned the ELPD assaulted him when he was recording the officers who he believed were unlawfully arresting his friend.

ELPD said once the investigation is completed, a special meeting of the East Lansing City Council will be held to provide a public review of all of the body cam and in-car footage from the incident and the video footage will be released at that time.

“ELPD takes allegations of this nature very seriously and is actively investigating the incident,” the statement said. “ELPD leadership expects professionalism from its sworn officers and the safety of the people within the community is our top priority. If it is discovered that something inappropriate occurred, appropriate action will be taken.”

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