Fla. PD Defends Cop Shown Throwing Woman

The Miami Beach Police Department says an officer caught on video struggling with a woman during an arrest acted appropriately during the volatile situation.


MIAMI BEACH, Fla. --

A YouTube video viewed hundreds of times showed a Miami Beach police officer slamming a woman into the sand, and the Police Department defended his actions Tuesday.

Miami Beach police Lt. Douglas Simon can be seen trying to detain Sara Greenback, 25. After he tried several times to arrest her, Greenback can be seen grabbing onto the officer's ATV.

The officer then throws Greenback to the ground. A struggle ensues with Greenback, and an angry crowd can be seen surrounding the officer.

Miami Beach Mayor Mattie Herrera Bower said the situation was getting out of control.

"Here is this one policeman, and the crowd is getting bigger and bigger," Bower said. "He had to be in control. There was no doubt that a policeman needs to be in control. It was very rude and heavy how he got her down."

In a statement, Miami Beach police said Greenback needed to be taken into custody for her safety and the safety of the officer. The department said it watched several YouTube videos of the incident and concluded that Simon "acted appropriately" as he was "dealing with the volatile situation at hand."

The mayor said the beach was filled with angry concertgoers who had paid to get into a party but could not because it was at capacity and the Miami Beach Fire Department had to shut it down. That is when, police said, the chaos began to spill over onto the sand.

Abelardo Soto, 29, was arrested after being accused of throwing an object at the officer, causing a cut that required stitches.

Greenback was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

Copyright 2011 by Post-Newsweek Stations. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed

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