A police attack against Oakland man Scott Campbell has drawn national attention and outrage after Campbell released a video of the incident on YouTube.
Early Thursday morning after Occupy Oakland's general strike, Campbell filmed police officers as they surrounded the remaining protesters. According to Campbell, an officer asked him to step back as he approached the police line with a video camera. Campbell obliged, and then began filming about ten feet from the officers. On the video, Campbell can be heard asking "is this OK?" twice. Several seconds later, an officer shoots him with what appears to be a rubber bullet.
After Campbell released the video, national voices including the New York Daily News and Keith Olbermann expressed outrage at the apparent randomness of the attack. According to the New York Daily News, Campbell was shot "for apparently no reason."
"[Was there] any warning?" asked Olbermann on his show Countdown with Keith Olbermann during an interview with Campbell. "Any indication that they were about to move?"
"No, there was absolutely no warning whatsoever," answered Campbell. "There was no order to disperse; there was no warning that weapons might be used."
"It reminds me of some of those black humor comedy sketches where the cop shoots and then says, 'stop or I'll shoot' after shooting," said Olbermann.
In an interview with San Jose Mercury News, University of South Carolina criminal justice professor Geoffrey Alpert said the video left him "astonished, amazed and embarrassed."
"Unless there's something we don't know, that's one of the most outrageous uses of a firearm that I've ever seen," he said.
Campbell also released a graphic photo of his injury, showing extreme bruising and swelling. He is currently investigating options regarding a lawsuit against the Department. The Oakland Police Department did not immediately respond to comment.
At the same protest, police also allegedly attacked Kayvan Sabeghi, an Iraq war veteran and the co-owner of Elevation 66 Brewing Company in El Cerrito, as he was walking home. Sabeghi had been out to dinner and was returning to his apartment near the protest when police would not let him through. Allegedly, while explaining to police that he was only trying to go home, officers beat Sabeghi with billy clubs and arrested him. Sabeghi suffered a lacerated spleen during the attack and was reportedly denied medical treatment for several hours.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article stated that Elevation 66 Brewing Company is in Berkeley. The article was updated to reflect the brewery's accurate location in El Cerrito.
Watch Campbell's video of the attack below, then watch his interview on Countdown with Keith Olbermann:
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