WEST MEMPHIS, AR (WMC) - A West Memphis man claims police beat him up, but police are telling a different story.
Montana Ceaser, 19, posted photos of himself on Facebook claiming police brutality. The photos show injuries to his face and ear.
Police said they tried to pull over Ceaser and his 20-year-old brother, who was a passenger in the car, because their car looked like one described in the case of a missing 14-year-old. The plate came back to a different car.
The men took off when the officer turned his lights and siren on, driving about 35 to 40 miles an hour. They drove about 10 blocks before bailing out at their mother's house. Dash cam video from West Memphis Police Department shows all of this happening.
The men said they did not stop because they feared the officer was going to beat them up.
"We went back and we looked at the prior encounters with Mr. Ceaser," WMPD Captain Joe Baker said.. "He had not run from us before. He has had encounters with us before and we have not had issues with him. I'm not sure where he is getting this [idea that] he's had problems before and he's scared of the police."
Ceaser admits they ran from police, but said it was because they were in fear. He said Reyes had a history with those officers.
"I walked out of the store and he rode by. He looked and he seen it was me and he turned," Reyes said.
The brothers ran three stop signs before reaching their relative's house, where they said they were heading for safety. Reyes got out of the vehicle and went into the home. Ceaser, however, ran from officers and was caught a few houses down in the bushes.
"They ordered him come out of the bushes and show his hands, and he refused and attempted to run again," Baker said.
One officer said he tackled Ceaser and they both hit a brick wall. Officers said they got him on the ground, but he kept flailing and kicking, trying to hit them. Police said Ceaser refused medical treatment.
"I struck Montana approximately three times on the right side of his face with a closed fist," one officer said.
Ceaser calls that police brutality.
"Police [are] supposed to be here to protect people, but instead they're brutality [sic] people," Ceaser said.
Even though Ceaser picked up a complaint form last week, police said he has not turned it in.
The teens' mother said the issues with the police officer go back when the two were in school together.
There is an internal investigation into the incident, but the three officers involved have not been relieved of duty.
Ceaser's stepmother said she plans to file a lawsuit.