FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Fort Lauderdale Police are now responding to accusations by a Critical Mass cyclist that he had excessive force used against him during Friday night’s ride.
“We usually police ourselves in the ride and have a safe ride for families in the community, Critical Mass is about supporting bicycle awareness and safety and police were there Friday night in mass,” said Daniel Littell.
According to Littell, 30, he was crossing Las Olas Bridge when a police car sped past him and other riders.
Littell said he yelled for the officer to slow down and also moved in front of the car forcing the driver to keep pace with the riders.
“In the beginning of the ride, they had pushed another cyclist down,” said Littell.
However, Littell claimed tempers flared at the end of the bridge and the officer tackled him.
“At the bottom of the bridge, the officer slammed on his brakes almost like he was trying to get people to hit him,” said Littell.
The alleged unsafe driving was not captured on video, but what happened later was recorded and posted on YouTube.
“The ride slowed and I was there straddling my bike and he just tackled me,” said Littell.
The video on YouTube shows the officer tackling and arresting Littell.
He was arrested for resisting arrest and impeding traffic, according to Littell.
Littell said he is considering legal action.
Police released a written statement Sunday.
The statement released reads as follows:
The Fort Lauderdale officers were assisting the critical mass riders on their ride through city on Friday. This assistance is in response to numerous complaints made by motorists and residents in the city of Ft. Lauderdale. The complaints range from numerous violations of traffic laws to a variety of incidents where riders are becoming confrontational w/ motorists.
In an attempt to both facilitate the ride in a safe manner and to address the complaints of our residents the officers were assisting the riders Friday night.
This individual in particular, continuously created a problem for the officers who were assisting the other riders.
This case is under an administrative review.
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