San Luis Obispo police officer accused of brutality during arrest

July 18, 2022


A video of an officer hitting a man repeatedly on the temple in San Luis Obispo during an arrest on Sunday has gone viral, leading to accusations of excessive force.

“SLO County Observer” live streamed and uploaded the video on YouTube, which now has over 8,700 views. While multiple commenters accuse the officer of brutality, others blame the suspect for resisting arrest.

Officers responding to a traffic hazard on Froom Ranch Road, pinned 29-year-old Justin O’Brien face down on the road. While three officers attempt to handcuff the suspect, he grabs hold of the handcuff with his free hand, according to the video.

An officer asks O’Brien to relax and explain he has warrants for his arrest.

“I am not Justin,” O’Brien repeatedly says.

A tall male officer warns the suspect he plans to punch him if he doesn’t let go of the handcuffs.

“I’m going to punch you in the face if you don’t let go of that handcuff right now,” the officer yelled, “It’s your last warning!”

The officer began punching and elbowing O’Brien in the temple, causing the suspect’s head to slam into the asphalt and bounce back up.

O’Brien stopped resisting, officers sat him on the curb with his hands cuffed behind his back while the officer who threw the punches appears to coddle his arm.

In the video, “SLO County Observer” reports the officer appears injured. The SLO Police Department call log also reports that injuries were sustained during the arrest. The SLO Police Department did not respond to questions about the incident.

Officers booked O’Brien into the SLO County Jail on a felony charge of resisting arrest regarding the incident on Sunday. He is also being held on charges of being under the influence, petty theft, theft of personal property and resisting arrest, all misdemeanors. He is being held in lieu of $665,000 bail.

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Criminal resists arrest, Injures officer. There. Fixed the headline.

Don’t resist and fight with cops and you won’t get struck in the head. Justin would’ve been choked out a few years ago which is more humane but California made it illegal.

What about those warrants? What were they for? Are they mixed in here with the litany of charges? Or was he correct and they had the wrong guy? $665k bail seems a tad excessive.

Not excessive at all. And if he hadn’t fought with the cops he’d be out right now.

I’d say that large bail amount is likely a result of his having outstanding warrants. Shows he can’t be trusted to come to court and handle his business. And then fighting with the cops during the arrest also shows him to lack control of himself (though supposedly he was drunk or something at the time).

Like all of us, LEO’s are human. Consider that the next time someone screams, “Police Brutality!!” Ever been scared, frightened, in fear for your life or the life of a loved one? Adrenalin, adrenalin, adrenalin.

Yes, even LEO’s have all of the same physiological traits. And those are put to the test every time they leave their homes and loved ones for their day on the beat. Especially when dealing with the criminal element, dangerous or not.

Don’t want to get messed up by Police Officers who are doing their jobs keeping the rest of us safe from the criminal? Don’t do stupid criminal activities. period!

Former LEO John Tatro, your thoughts?

name the officers?

Hero #1. Hero #2. And Hero #3. Done.

Wtf, not heros just well paid union cops.

When they run into a school and deal with a shooter, then we can talk.

Calling them heroes is like giving awards for showing up, 15th place ribbons woot!

Yes, name the officers. I need to know who to address the gift certificates to.

Was he that Justin? Was he lying to the police?

But if he is guilty and had a warrant and resisted, that’s on him.

Guilty until proven innocent here in Slobama. Unless you’re rich and have attorneys, then you get a free pass. Terrible. Good job slocountyobserver, you do some good work. The new slostinger, but more verbose and informed.

Great job LEO, having to deal with drug addicts and mental patients daily can be very difficult.