Officer punches woman who claims she's pregnant

12:16 PM, Aug 29, 2013   |    comments
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ROCHESTER (DEMOCRAT AND CHRONICLE) -- Rochester Police Chief James Sheppard said he has seen a YouTube video that shows a city officer arresting and striking a woman on the head, and he is reserving decision on whether the officer's actions were appropriate.

In doing so, Sheppard praised his officers for their restraint.

"I think if you watch the video, what you do see is that all the officers involved used tremendous restraint during the course of this event," Sheppard said in a news conference.

"They were aware of the fact that there was video being produced, and I think since the last two years, we've been very aware that that's the potential for anything that we're involved in," he said, referring to the 2011 video recorded by local activist Emily Good, who was subsequently arrested. That recording went viral, the incident became a national news story, and the charges against Good were later dismissed.

YouTube: Watch the video (Warning: Graphic language, content)

The new video shows Officer Lucas Krull trying to arrest Brenda Hardaway, 21, and handcuff her hands behind her back. City Court documents indicate that as Rochester police officers were arresting Romengeno Hardaway outside 384 Selye Terrace on Tuesday afternoon, Brenda Hardaway intervened.

Family members said the incident started about 4:30 p.m. when Brenda Hardaway was arguing with her mother, Claire Taylor, and nearby residents called police. Romengeno Hardaway, 16, said Wednesday that he had also gotten into a dispute with his uncle about the same time and the situation escalated.

When police arrived, Romengeno Hardaway said, they started to speak with him, and he told them they had no consent to come onto the property.

"At first, he (an officer) grabbed my arm," the Marshall High School junior said. "I understand that I was resisting arrest, but what was the prior? I didn't do anything to get arrested for

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