WATCH: The video has only been edited to ‘bleep’ profanity.
WILMINGTON — Wilmington Police officers apparently broke into a Wilmington home after one of its residents called about ‘prostitutes’ in the area, according to a video published on Facebook early Monday morning.
The officers are seen breaking into the home, apparently tasing an unidentified person inside as he screams, and telling the filmer and another man to get off the porch without responding to repeated questions as to why they are breaking into the home. The two men ask what the officers are doing at least 45 different occasions during the nearly 5-minute video, but the officers do not appear to respond.
In response to the video — and to questions of why the officers had behaved aggressively without answering the filmer’s questions — WPD spokesperson Jessica Williams said the department is aware of the video and is “looking into the facts and circumstances of the case.”
“This is the busiest time of year for the police department, but we’re doing our best to get answers to you all as quickly as possible and we understand that the public is concerned about what’s shown in this video,” Williams said.
Jimmy Valimont, whose Facebook profile appears to match an image of his face captured after an officer knocked his camera to the ground, posted, “When you call about hookers in the neighborhood …” above the video.
Shortly after Port City Daily reached out to the WPD and to Valimont via Facebook, the video that was published on his page had been removed; it had been shared at least 200 times beforehand. Valimont did not immediately respond to a request for comment, or why the video had been removed.
The video begins with two officers, each wearing WPD uniforms, attempting to break into the front door on the left side of the front porch, refusing to answer repeated questions by the filmer and another man inquiring, “What is going on?” A female officer then walks by the filmer and yells, “Move!” before appearing to push his recording device to the ground.
As the camera lies down facing the wooded porch, the sound of glass breaking can be heard, followed by the sounds of a man appearing to scream in pain inside the home. After the camera is picked up, it shows the two officers at the door on the right side of the porch with the male officer holding a deployed taser gun, its chord running through a broken window on the door.
“He just tased him!” a male’s voice can be heard saying.
The female officer yells for someone inside to get on the ground, before her colleague says, “I got nothin,” before holstering his taser gun and attempting to kick the door in.
“We called you ‘cus there’s f—ing prostitutes in our neighborhood and you’re kicking our asses!” the filmer yelled to the male officer.
“Get off the porch,” the male officer tells him.
“This is my porch! Get off my porch!” the filmer yells back before repeating himself while the sounds of approaching police sirens become increasingly audible.
The filmer then turns toward the female officer and asks for her name, who also tells him to get off the porch. Blood is seen on her left forearm as she yells, “Get away, now. Get away! Do not approach me!”
“Forgive me, I’m on my porch. What’s going on? What is going on? I called you for prostitutes — what’s going on? Please tell me,” the filmer responds.
She then yells something indiscernible and runs toward the left side of the house, and soon the filmer’s camera is again knocked down by as a male voice yells, “Get out of the way!”
As the sirens become louder, at least three police cars approach. The filmer walks around the street, asking another male officer, “What is going on?”
The filmer then shows the officers running toward a nearby home while a group of them appear to be searching for someone.
“Hey check over there behind the fence,” one of the officers yells out.
As more sirens approach, the group of officers runs past the filmer, who walks in their direction down the street. Some officers get in cars and rush down a different road before stopping a few hundred yards away. As he approaches them, a female officer yells, “Put your hands behind your back now. Put them behind your back now!”
The video ends at this point. It is unclear if the filmer or the man who had apparently been tased were arrested.
The WPD did not respond to when and where the incident took place, why the officers did not answer repeated questions as to what was going on, why the filmer’s camera was shoved from his hand, or other details seen in the video.
The residence appears to be the corner house at 420 Wrights St. at S. 5th Avenue. According to records from the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office detention center, an arrest was made several houses away at 1010 S. 5th Avenue for charges of assaulting an officer and resisting arrest.
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