PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) – Panama City Police Department officials said they’ve fired an officer involved in a use of force incident on Thursday.
The incident happened on 11th Street and Everitt Avenue, near the Chapman Early Education Center.
An incident report states the arresting officer responded to a disturbance outside the education center. The officer saw Calvin Pittman, 41, pushing a wheelchair and filming staff and students with his phone.
The officer said Pittman was agitated and loud. When asked why he was filming the students and staff, Pittman said, “they were out to kill me, and I have to record it,” before saying that he thought that the officers were fake police and that he was scared of them.
The officer said Pittman tried to walk into oncoming traffic multiple times during the confrontation.
The officer said that when he was going to take Pittman into custody, Pittman became aggressive with police brutality and other comments.
Tony Bostick, Northwest Florida Minority Business Chamber leader, said that Pittman has “diminished mental capacity.”
“He’s been known to walk around town and sometimes he goes in and out but he doesn’t harm anyone,” Bostick said.
During the arrest, a secondary incident occurred between a police officer and Mr. Pittman, which required the arresting police officer to intervene.
Bostick said that the details of what happened during the secondary incident are still unclear.
The arresting officer reported the incident to supervisors and Chief Scott Ervin opened a secondary investigation into the complaint.
As a result of the subsequent investigation, the second police officer, whose name will not be released, involved in the incident, has been terminated from the Department.
“So far, what we know is that Mr. Pittman was assaulted by a Panama City police officer. A secondary officer stood by and watched it without intervening, and then a third officer actually came in and pulled him off,” Bostick said. “As a result, now they’re trying to say that Mr. Pittman assaulted the other officer that pulled him off.”
Part of the incident was captured on video. During the encounter, you can see one officer pull another officer away from a man on the ground in handcuffs.
Officials said the man in handcuffs in the video was not being tased.
Bostick said the woman in the video is Pittman’s sister.
“It shows a lack of empathy and just a blatant disrespect for humanity when the officer assaulted her brother in front of her,” he said. “I think that was really, really uncalled for.”
The report said that Pittman was calling for medical help and stated that he couldn’t breathe, among other medical complaints once he was in handcuffs.
Pittman was transferred to Bay Medical Center where he was medically cleared.
Pittman was charged with disorderly conduct.