Kinston officials and woman speak out about incident that led up to viral video

Published: Apr. 13, 2021 at 11:17 PM EDT
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KINSTON, N.C. (WITN) - Two Kinston Police officers are on administrative leave following a video that shows an officer hitting a man Monday night.

City officials held a news conference Tuesday evening about the incident to answer any questions from the public and the media.

Amber Lake was able to speak with the woman who urged the pizza place to call the police on Bruton.

Dana Hall went into the Little Caesar’s at 111 West Vernon Ave, Monday night to get a pizza for her and her family.

Hall said 36-year-old David Bruton, who she does not know, came into the store and started yelling and cursing at her.

Kinston Police responded to the scene around 6:38 where they discovered a disturbance among customers which rose to the level of an employee pressing a silent alarm.

Interviews started at the scene between customers and police and Bruton ran off.

Police say Bruton stopped running and took an aggressive fighting stance with officers before running away again.

Video captured by a driver shows Bruton fall to the ground, after the pursuit, and an officer punching him several times.

The NAACP met with police shortly after the video was posted.

Chief of Police, Tim Dilday said there were obvious punches in the video that surfaced, and the appropriateness will be determined throughout the investigation.

Two police officers, McKinley Jones, who has been with the department for 2 and a half years and Kevin Page, who has been with the department for a year and a quarter, have been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation.

Police say there is no indication that a taser was used during the altercation.

Chief Dilday said that Bruton was known to the police department but was not known to the officers involved in the incident.

He also said that Crisis Intervention Team or CIT training is required for officers to have, that helps them learn how to de-escalate situations.

Chief Dilday said one officers had CIT training and the other hadn’t gotten it yet due to a delay with the pandemic.

WRAL talked to Bruton’s parents who told them he was diagnosed with mental illness and schizophrenia as a teenager.

They said police have had several encounters with him before, including times when the family would call them after he became unruly at home.

They also said they haven’t seen him since January, and they want him to get help. Bruton was given a $500 secured bond and was released from custody around 8 Monday night.

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