A New York City police officer has been suspended and an investigation has been launched after video appeared to show the officer repeatedly punching a teenage girl, the mayor said Wednesday.
“I was not pleased with what I saw on the video,” said Mayor Eric Adams, a former New York police officer.
The incident occurred around 2:40 p.m. Tuesday in the Port Richmond section of Staten Island, when officers observed “a large fight involving multiple female juveniles," Julian Phillips, the deputy police commissioner for public information, said in a statement.
A girl was being jumped, and officers intervened, Adams said.
Video of the encounter was posted to Instagram, which is where Adams said he first became aware of it.
The video appears to show an officer holding on to the back of a young girl's jacket and striking the girl, who is bent over and occasionally swings an arm back at the officer. Other young people try to grab the girl being punched and pull her away.
Police said that as officers were detaining a person, a 14-year-old girl reached for the officer’s handcuffs and struck the officer in the head and that the officer struck the teen with his hand several times.
The police officer, who was suspended without pay, was not identified in the police statement. Police said he is a 14-year veteran of the department.
Adams said he has communicated with the chancellor of the city's Education Department about the incident.
It happened off school grounds, and the officers were assigned to a school dismissal post, police said.
Adams said investigators will use the officers’ body-worn cameras and the Instagram video.
“The police commissioner swiftly suspended the officer that was involved and now the Internal Affairs Bureau is doing a thorough investigation to determine exactly what happened,” he said.
The 14-year-old was treated at a hospital and released, police said.
The New York police officers union, the Police Benevolent Association, did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday.