NEW ORLEANS (WLS) --A video of a Chicago man being arrested on Bourbon Street in New Orleans being arrested is going viral. It has more than 700,000 views on YouTube and thousands of shares on Facebook.
The video was taken around 4 a.m. on Saturday, June 25, and shows Northwestern Medicine doctor Michael J. Hoffman being thrown to the floor by a Louisiana State Trooper.
Louisiana police say the trooper in the video had just ended his shift when he was asked to step into a bar because Hoffman allegedly refused to leave. Police say Hoffman was with his brother. The trooper asked the two men to leave, trying to get him to go back to his hotel according to police, but they refused. Hoffman's lawyer says the bar would not return his client's credit card.
Hoffman is charged with four misdemeanors: public intoxication, criminal trespass, disturbing the peace and resisting arrest. His brother faces no charges. Hoffman's lawyer says the doctor was released the same morning, with injuries that included bruising to both arms, head lacerations and a cut to his abdomen that needed stitches.
Social media reaction appears to be split between people who think the trooper acted reasonably since Hoffman would not comply with his instructions to leave the bar and others who think too much force was used. Joshua Plauche, who recorded the video, says the trooper's body slam was too much.
"I saw him practice patience when he was listening, and I respected that, like I said, up until the part when he put his hands on him and shoved him down," Plauche says.
The head of the Louisiana State Police says, "The trooper acted appropriately under the circumstances."
Dr. Hoffman's attorney says his client's charges are unfounded and they will seek to get them dropped. His attorney did not deny that Hoffman had been drinking and said that he was doing what most people do on Bourbon Street. He said his client has not decided whether to press charges against the trooper.
Northwestern Medicine says they are aware of the incident and are conducting an internal review.