Video taken from the very table the incident occurred at:
An off-duty Atlanta police officer got into a scuffle with a woman and punched her in the face, and the early morning incident at an IHOP was captured on video, the Atlanta Police Department confirmed.
The woman, Cynthia Freeman, was among four arrested in the 4 a.m. Sunday incident, according to Atlanta attorney Bobby Aniekwu. He told the AJC he is representing three of the women in what he considers a case of "excessive force."
Freeman was charged with obstruction of justice, criminal trespass and simple battery, Aniekwu said. She is recovering from her injuries and weighing her legal options, he said.
"I have not received a copy of the police report, we have to review all those things," he said. "As I sit here today, there's a great likelihood we will start some litigation."
It was not clear what started the melee, but the incident started as a conflict between the officer, working a second job at the Buckhead restaurant, and another woman with the one who was hit.
According to several videos posted on YouTube.com, the officer, whose name was not known, shouted at a woman sitting in the corner of a booth near the door and then he lunged at her. A woman wearing a black dress appeared to be trying to separate the officer and her friend when the officer slapped her. The woman in the black dress hit him back, and he punched her in the face.
A second officer came up just as the struggle began. He got involved when it became physical between the first cop and the woman in the black dress, apparently trying to separate them. The first officer pulled the woman in a black dress away from the table, threw her onto the floor and laid on top of her while trying to get handcuffs on one wrist. The second wrist was cuffed when she turned over on her stomach.
Within moments, a female officer appeared to hold back the crowd while the woman in the black dress, shoeless, was led out of the restaurant. (read more)