Martese Johnson, 20 and Black, was brutally attacked by White, Alcohol Beverage Control officers outside of Trinity Bar near the University of Virginia campus, where he is a junior year and honor student. As he was denied entry into Trinity because of an alleged fake I.D., he walked away from the shunning, but in moments, he was accosted by ABC.
They officers obtained the guise of official police, but are actually Alcoholic Beverage Control agents that work for UVA. ABC went on to use excessive force on Johnson, leaving his face bloodied and bruised. He was also pushed and shoved to the ground and arrested and later charged for Public Swearing/Intoxication and “obstructing” justice.
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ABC’s disgraceful behavior happened on Wednesday night and hours after the incident went viral, as someone captured it on cell phone video, students immediately arranged protests against ABC’s excessive force, as Johnson got ten stitches. So far, two UVA administrators have condemned ABC, Marcus L. Martin of the Vice President for Diversity & Equity and Maurice Apprey, the Dean of African-American Affairs. Together, they released a statement:
“His head was slammed into the hard pavement with excessive force. The student required medical evaluation and treatment at the UVA Hospital Emergency Department. This was wrong and should not have occurred. In the many years of our medical, professional and leadership roles at the University, we view the nature of this assault as highly unusual and appalling based on the information we have received.”
An independent investigation has opened on the altercation, a order requested by the Governor of Virginia, Terry McAuliffe.
This is just another notch on a too-long list of incidents across America that transpire as racially-charged. You can hear in the video that Johnson, who’s a UVA Black Student Alliance leader, was angry and shocked, yelling “I go to UVA! I go to UVA! F**king racists! How did these happen!” He hasn’t spoken to the media, but did appear at UVA protests where he thanked the crowd for their support and encouraged non-violent actions.
The two officers who beat Matrese have been placed on administrative leave.
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