RIVERDALE PARK, Md. (WJZ) — A Maryland police chief is standing by his officers after video of them tasing a suspect goes viral.
Amy Yensi explains what led to the takedown.READ MORE: Maryland Weather: Frigid, Blustery Morning In Store Saturday After Snow
The police chief is praising the officers and says they’re a good example of how to use restraint in tense situations.
YouTube video shows the moment a Maryland officer tases Marcus Anthony Moycherilli for refusing to follow orders. It happened early Friday afternoon inside a fast food restaurant packed with stunned patrons.
Officers rushed to the McDonald’s after getting a call that a man who appeared to be hallucinating was arguing with himself and throwing chairs inside.
When tasing didn’t work, the Riverdale Park officer whipped Moycherilli with a baton. The Washington, D.C. resident appeared unfazed.
Eventually, the officer called for backup as the man wrestled with the two officers, still refusing to get down on the ground.
“I commend the officers for what they did,” said Chief David Morris, Riverdale Park Police Department.READ MORE: Person Sought In Fire That Killed 3 Baltimore Firefighters; $30K Reward Announced
The town’s police chief is standing by his officers, saying they are veterans of the force–and it shows.
“They acted appropriately, using the appropriate level of force to try and control a very volatile situation,” said Morris.
But some of the restaurant’s patrons say the officers went too far.
“He wasn’t a threat. He didn’t have no gun. He didn’t have no knife. No stick. No nothing. All you had to do was take him down to the ground,” said Jeanette Butler.
Officials say his resistance is typical for people under the influence of PCP.
“We recognize that the individuals that were under the influence of PCP were oblivious to the pain,” Morris said.
The suspect returned to the same McDonald’s the next day and was served with a criminal summons and escorted away by police. He did not recall the taser incident.
The suspect later admitted to using PCP. Officials say they’re seeing a spike in the drug’s use.MORE NEWS: LIVE LOOK: Ocean City Expecting Up To A Foot Of Snow
None of the officers or patrons were hurt in the incident. The suspect was treated for a minor injury at an area hospital.