"It was ridiculous for one little kid that was about the same size of me," one elderly lady said.
An Amazon driver who was arrested for "parking facing the wrong way" is now facing felony charges.
Cellphone footage of the incident in Warren, Michigan kicked off a public spat between Mayor Jim Fouts — who described it as "outrageous and unacceptable" on Facebook — and Police Commissioner Bill Dwyer, who demanded he remove the post.
The incident occurred on Tuesday, when the driver — who is black — reportedly parked his van facing in the wrong direction as he made a delivery.
The video, captured by a passer-by Amondeuz Graham, picks up as the officer — who is white — has the man handcuffed and pinned to the ground.
"One of the ladies who lived at the residence came out and tried to explain to the cop, 'that's my friend’s house, he was just delivering a package', like 'I don't know what's going on here, he's just delivering a package'," he explained per ClickonDetroit.
Indeed in the video concerned neighbors — including the one he just delivered to — can be heard advising the driver to "stay calm" and "be still"; even Graham can be heard confusedly asking "because he parked backwards?"
Sirens can be heard blaring in the background after the officer called for back-up; the video cuts just as another motorbike officer pulls up to join the arrest, even though the first officer doesn't appear to be having any trouble holding the smaller man down.
"He was so polite to my next door neighbor, he offered to put it on the chair for her because it was a little bit heavy," one elderly witness told Fox2.
"It was ridiculous for one little kid that was about the same size of me."
"From when my sister walked in the house and then walked back out, the cop had him on the ground and had him cuffed and was calling for back-up," added another neighbor.
"Several of the neighbors spoke with the cop saying 'the kid hasn't done anything', and the cop was like 'well, he was parked the wrong way'."
Upon seeing the video, Mayor Fouts immediately posted an angry statement on Facebook calling for the officer to be terminated.
"There was an outrageous and unacceptable physical altercation with a Warren police officer involving a young African American delivery man for Amazon to a Warren home today," he wrote.
"I have spoken with Police Commissioner Bill Dwyer and have ordered that this officer be terminated immediately."
"I have zero tolerance for this disgusting act against an innocent person. If the last two weeks have brought up anything, it is that bad behavior by ANY police officer will not be tolerated. And I’m calling on the Macomb County Prosecutor to look into this situation to see if either charges should be brought against this individual and the U.S. attorney if this was a civil rights violation."
"The policy of the warren police department and the training provided to every officer is to deescalate every situation. This officer did not follow policy or his training and is not fit to serve the citizens in Warren. BLACK LIVES MATTER."
But just hours later, he deleted the post — after being told to do so by the Police Commissioner.
"The previous post regarding an altercation was taken down at the request of the Warren Police Commissioner," he wrote in a replacement post. "I await further details based upon additional information."
"I received several phone calls earlier regarding this incident requiring me to make a statement that any type of aggressive behavior is not tolerated. I was upset that one individual could possibly besmirch the fine reputation of Warren police officers."
At a press conference on Wednesday morning, Commissioner Dwyer said the driver is facing felony charges of resisting and obstructing a police officer, failure to obey a lawful command, and failure to produce a driver's license.
He was also issued a citation for illegal parking with left wheel to curb.
Dwyer revealed dash cam footage of the incident, claiming the officer asked for the driver's ID 11 times, but was refused.
"Why are you on the wrong side of the road? You're not Post Office, you don't drive on the wrong side of the road," the officer says in the footage.
The driver insists he's working, calling the situation BS, as they argue over the classification of the Amazon truck operating as a postal vehicle.
"You gonna give me a ticket for this bullshit?" the driver says
"I'm going to give you a whole lot more if you don't get your license out," the officer replies.
Internal affairs is now investigating the incident. Dwyer said the officer involved — who is on paid administrative leave — would receive due process, and called on citizens to avoid generalizing the incident as a "bad cop" scenario.
"It's critical the public understands to not put all police officers and paint them with a broad brush that they're bad officers," he said.
Neither the officer nor the driver were injured in the confrontation; the driver was later released on personal bond. One witness at the scene even offered to come to the station and pay it for him.
Amazon, which had to send another employee to pick up the van, issued a brief but strongly-worded statement, standing with its driver.
"We see what others see in this video, and it’s unacceptable. We expect a swift investigation and full accountability for those involved," a spokesperson said.
"Amazon will deploy all necessary resources to investigate the matter with our Delivery Service Provider, as well as to represent and support the driver."