A controversial video from Fort Collins, Colorado, came out this past week. In the video, a 22-year-old sorority student was slammed headfirst into the ground by a police officer.
At first many were appalled by the police officer's actions. However, it was soon revealed that there was more to the video, which only captured Colorado State University student Michaella Surat being assaulted by the officer:
According to reports, police responded to a call about a disturbance between two men, one of those men being Surat's boyfriend.
Officers were getting ready to arrest Surat's boyfriend and the other individual when Surat bum-rushed the officer and “shoulder checked” him.
Police told CBS4 that Surat:
“...tried to pull her boyfriend out of the area. The officers told her that her boyfriend was not free to leave but that she could go. She remained at the scene, at which time she physically obstructed and struck an officer.”
It was only then that someone began to film the incident, as the officer attempted to arrest Surat. In light of her unwillingness to comply, the officer conducted “standard arrest control" to stabilize the obstructive student:
The video then garnered a slew of controversial comments, with many on social media saying that the officer did not need to go to those lengths to take down a 115-pound young woman
During the confrontation that led to Surat's arrest, she suffered multiple injuries, including several bruises, a concussion, and a chin contusion, according to her family:
While the video has raised much debate on whether or not the officer was out of line, Surat just sat down with Good Morning America and opened up about her side of the incident, and everything that has transpired since:
A tearful Surat told the GMA hosts:
“I found out my boyfriend got kicked out of the bar and so I went outside just to see what happened — and then the altercation happened and one thing led to another and it just escalated.”
As she referred to the moment the officer took her to the ground, Surat tearfully said:
“All my bones were shattering in my face...and I was so humiliated and everyone was watching me.”
Surat said that the aftermath of the incident has escalated way out of hand as well:
“I can't go to school without worrying someone's going to assault me, I'm getting death threats.”
The college student, who has since hired a lawyer, says she wants an explanation from the police for why they did that to her:
“I would like an apology or an explanation to why it escalated to the point of body slamming me into the concrete.”
Surat's lawyer, Andrew Bertrand told GMA:
“I was extremely appalled. Certainly my client Michaella...she was confused about where her boyfriend was. She looked highly irritated, but nothing I saw in that video warranted this.”
He added that the officer “was very aggressive.”
As for Surat's parents, they said they are unable to watch the video. Her father told GMA:
“I saw the video briefly and I can't watch it — I just can't watch it, I can't do it.”
He added that due to the severity of the incident, things could have been a lot worse:
“One little hair off differently that could have been her death — we could have been planning her funeral.”
While it is unclear as to whether or not Surat and her family will be filing charges against the officer in question, Surat is currently facing charges herself — of third-degree assault and obstructing an officer.
Her court date is the following month.
The officers at the scene did have body cameras on them, which recorded the entire arrest
However, the Fort Collins Police said they will not release the footage until the investigation is closed to make sure that it's “treated in a fair and impartial manner.”