3 Dover police officers accused of punching restrained man during arrest

Posted: Updated:
DOVER -

A group of Dover police officers has been accused of repeatedly punching a man who was restrained during an arrest over the weekend.

The arrest was caught on video. Authorities say that 19-year-old Cyprian Luke was wanted for an aggravated assault charge. Officers were able to track him down due to a phone tip and tried to arrest him outside a Krauszer’s convenience store around 2 a.m. Sunday.

Luke’s friend Marcus Robinson filmed cellphone video of the arrest.

In the video, police officers are heard shouting “stop resisting” while they have Luke on the ground with at least two police officers on top of him. He is instructed to roll over, and then when he fails to do so an officer is seen punching Luke in the face.

“He looked up at the camera and he wasn’t moving and he just punched him one time,” Robinson says. “When I first got over there, he got Maced. He was like trying to cover his eyes.”

Luke’s face appeared to be bruised and his eyes red in the video. Robinson says that Luke did not roll over because an officer had placed a knee in Luke’s stomach.

Warning: The following video may be disturbing for some viewers.


Eventually, Luke is handcuffed and taken to an ambulance. Robinson is heard asking for the officers’ badge numbers. One of the officers swats at Robinson’s phone, while another tells him to stand back or he could be arrested himself.

As for whether Luke was resisting arrest, Dover Police Director Daniel DeGroot says, “If a person is not resisting, they’re not going to tell them to stop resisting.”

Dover Mayor James Dodd says that he has seen the video and was disturbed by it. He says that the attorney general’s office will be investigating.

But the mayor also adds, “I urge everyone to show restraint until all the facts come out and the investigation completed.”

Three officers have been placed on administrative leave while the investigation takes place.

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