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Man at center of viral video talks about altercation with Akron police, plans to sue

Posted at 5:45 PM, Oct 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-23 18:45:56-04

Patrick King said his Sunday afternoon started off normal. He walked to a neighborhood store and on his way back home he stopped to chat with a friend in his front yard.

But suddenly, King said he was confronted by Akron police officers on Para Avenue.

"Basically pulled up alongside of me, jumped out and asked me for my ID," King said.

King, 47, spoke to News 5 Tuesday morning from the Summit County Jail, where he's being held without bond on multiple charges, including resisting arrest and drug abuse.

King admitted he lied to police about his identity, but insisted he wasn't doing anything wrong.

"They wanted to handcuff me and I didn't want to be handcuffed and I said, 'What for? What for?' And, they got one handcuff on me and then threw me to the ground," he said.

Much of what happened next was captured on a neighbor's cell phone. The video has since been shared on social media thousands of times.

RELATED: Viral video shows officers use Taser and punch man on ground; Akron police investigating

King can be seen struggling on the ground with two officers. One of the officers shocked King with a Taser several times. When backup arrived, another officer delivered multiple body blows to King.

"They started beating on me, wailing on me, kicked me in the ribs several times," King said.

King said the incident left him with a very sore back and neck.

"I can barely sit still right now. I'm having trouble just raising my spine."

When asked if he thought it was excessive force, King said, "Yes, I do. I'm just waiting to get a hold of a lawyer and I plan on suing."

Akron police said the video doesn't tell the entire story.

Deputy Chief Jesse Leeser said King was spotted leaving a known drug house and lied about who he was. An officer got one handcuff on the 6-foot-4-inch, 220-pound man, but he ignored multiple commands and resisted for several minutes," Leeser said.

Leeser said a Taser, body strikes, and eventually six officers, were needed to control King.

"He was obviously actively fighting with these officers. They were winded. The fight had gone to the ground. Not only did he have the handcuff as a weapon possibly, but the officers were also very exposed. We're not ground fighters," Leeser said.

King denied visiting a drug house and said he did not assault officers during the struggle.

"I didn't swing at the officers. I know that. I didn't punch at them. I know that. I didn't kick at them. I know that," he said.

King said he served six years in the Army. During his service, he was involved in an Army vehicle accident in Panama and was pinned in the back seat. He said the incident left him with post-traumatic stress syndrome.

He said that feeling of being pinned rushed back to him when he was on the ground with police, which put him a panic mode.

"The Tasers came out. Everything was happening so fast. As far as me flailing and wailing around, yeah, that was a combination of the electricity going through my body and the PTSD."

According to police, King admitted to ingesting drugs and he was taken to a hospital to be checked out.

But King said he only tried to swallow an empty plastic bag as part of a suicide attempt.

Police said King also had two active warrants, one out of Cuyahoga County for a probation violation and another for obstructing out of New Franklin.

King told News 5 the Cuyahoga County warrant related to walking away from a court-ordered veteran's treatment center, a decision he regrets.

He said he had prior run-ins with the law for not paying child support and drug possession, but he doesn't feel his past justifies the actions of Akron police on Sunday.

"I hope you never get in that situation, but it seems like it's become more and more of a police state."

Akron police will conduct an internal review of the officers involved in the use of force.

The department declined to comment on King's threat to take legal action.