An investigation has been launched after video footage of a Michigan fast-food worker handcuffed at gunpoint by Grand Rapids Police officers earlier this month went viral. Authorities believed the 22-year-old man fit the description of a robbery suspect.
The incident took place in the parking lot of a local McDonalds restaurant on Division Avenue in Grand Rapids on Friday, Sept. 3. The young man in the clip, lying on the ground, which was recorded from inside the restaurant, was identified as Isaiah.
The young man had come from collecting his paycheck when officers surrounded him. As he was surrounded by officers pointing their guns and holding at K-9 at him, employees told police Isaiah works at the restaurant.
“He just came in here to get his check. He’s been in his job for two hours,” says a woman through the window of the store. “And they talk about somebody just robbed the building 30 minutes ago — he’s been in this building for two hours.”
Meanwhile, another woman, seemingly a manager in a purple shirt, pleaded with an officer. Finally, another woman in the video can be heard yelling to Isaiah to “just lay down” and “don’t move.”
Others yelled that the young man was not their suspect from the robbery that had taken place roughly 30 minutes prior because he’d been on duty for the past two hours.
Shortly after the video went viral, the Grand Rapids Police Chief Eric Payne released a statement stating that a security alarm was triggered at a 29th Street business, where an unattended backpack was discovered at the loading dock. He said Isaiah was arrested because he had a backpack that matched the description of the one at the crime scene.
He clarified that the additional police officers were brought in efforts to de-escalate the situation, citing the young man refused to comply with authorities and had reportedly begun making suicidal comments.
However, Payne said following “a subsequent review of video obtained from McDonald’s indicated the suspect arrived approximately 20 minutes before officers. This conflicts with witness statements that the individual was on-site for several hours.”
He continued, “Body-worn and dash-board camera footage has been collected and preserved per department regulations. At this time, the individual has been charged with resisting arrest and the investigation into the breaking and entering is continuing.”
Court records obtained by FOX 17 found that Isaiah was arrested for malicious destruction of police property and attempted assault/resisting of a police officer. The Office of Oversight and Public Accountability said they “received numerous complaints from concerned members of the community.” They said they would also be overseeing the police department’s review.