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DULUTH-A four minute video clip released by authorities on Friday afternoon has received thousands of hits online and is gaining national exposure for showing an exchange involving Duluth police officer Richard Jouppi.
Jouppi's attorney says his client has yet to be charged for what happened in that video - taken by security cameras on September 21.
50-year-old Anthony Jackson, the man seen in the wheelchair in the video, had his felony assault charge for striking a police officer dropped on Friday.
Police report show that the actions taken by officer Jouppi at the Duluth Detoxification Center was the culmination of the night started at San Marco's apartments (a building reserved for the city's homeless and chronic alcoholics).
Jackson allegedly assaulted two people before police were called.
At detox a security camera captured the video (found in the story above).
One of Jackson's neighbors, Steve Lutz, said he can't believe what he saw.
"I was shocked. You know, that's not supposed to happen. [it was] Somebody in a wheelchair. He was drunk but so what," Lutz said.
FOX 21's Facebook also exploded after we posted the clip expressing similar feelings. Kristy Herubin started her poster by calling it "absolutely ridiculous".
Jouppi's attorney with the Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association Legal Defense Fund, Frederick Bruno, says police administration is poisoning the future jury pool.
"You know, if that's the game they want to play, I can play it too but I think it's irresponsible that they did that even before the guy was charged with anything," Bruno said.
"The guy assaulted a cop and what do you expect to happen? Cops are trained not to take a beating. They're trained to be on top of things. They're trained to respond with a much higher level of force than the level of force that is presented against them," Bruno said.
Duluth police department administration disagrees by saying Jouppi's actions are not proper use of force.
"If a reasonable officer would take the same or similar actions to use force its deemed to be reasonable. So there's some ambiguity, however, that's the standard the courts use," Patrol Division Deputy Chief Mike Tusken said.
Some Facebook users say the action seems justified. William David Gates' post got five likes.
Lutz says there's nothing to like about it.
"Knocking the chair over and then beating on him," Lutz said. "If I did that to either one of you right now, you know, where would I be."
San Marco's Apartment staff says Jackson is planning on making a statement on Monday.
There's no word on when Jouppi will be charged.
The private prosecutor who is planned to take over the criminal case could not be reached for comment on Saturday and that the same story for many city officials.
Police Chief Gordon Ramsay is out of the country, according to his administration.
Mayor Don Ness has also stayed mum on the subject but his office reported on Friday that they were receiving concerned phone–calls.
Duluth's human right's office is also staying quiet.