Two Buffalo, N.Y., police officers have been suspended without pay and an internal affairs investigation launched after a shocking video showed officers push an elderly man, who then fell to the ground and started bleeding on the sidewalk, according to reports.
"He's bleeding out his ear!" someone is heard saying in the video.
WARNING: GRAPHIC VIDEO
The unidentified 75-year-old man was in "stable but serious" condition at a local hospital, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown wrote on Twitter.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo called in the incident "wholly unjustified and utterly disgraceful."
The man appeared unresponsive on the sidewalk as officers in riot gear continued a sweep of an area outside Buffalo City Hall shortly before the city's 9.p.m curfew took effect, Buffalo radio station WBFO reported.
Police initially said the man "tripped & fell" without mentioning that officers had pushed him.
"A 5th person was arrested during a skirmish with other protestors and also charged with disorderly conduct. During that skirmish involving protestors, one person was injured when he tripped & fell," a police spokesman said in a statement.
Medics responded to the scene and put the man in an ambulance, WBFO reported.
Two Buffalo police officers were suspended without pay pending an investigation ordered by Buffalo Police Commissioner Byron Lockwood, sources told Ali Ingersoll of Investigative Post.
"Yes, we are aware of this video. Thank you," New York Attorney General Letitia James’ office wrote in a tweet.
New York Civil Liberties Union said in a statement that "The casual cruelty demonstrated by Buffalo police officers tonight is gut-wrenching and unacceptable."
"Police officers cannot continue to hide behind the lie that they are protecting and serving," the organization added. "There is no place for military geared police to enforce a curfew by inflicting violence on the very people they are supposed to protect."
The incident occurred as a protest was ending, and came amid numerous altercations between officers and demonstrators throughout the U.S., following the death of George Floyd in police custody on May 25 in Minneapolis.