An Eastern Kentucky football player is facing charges of assault after body-slamming a police officer during a traffic stop in Ohio.
Police dashcam video showed Michael Harris, a linebacker for Eastern Kentucky University, getting into an altercation with Ohio police officers. The incident began when he was stopped and escalated until the 6-foot-3, 245-pound linebacker picked up a male officer and dropped him to the ground.
(Source: Fox News)
The camera on a Grove City police cruiser caught the incident as it unfolded, as Harris was seen arguing with the two officers who reportedly had stopped him after call to the scene. A local business had called police to say that the 19-year-old was being “aggressive” and “did not seem to be ‘all there,’” according to police records obtained by TMZ Sports.
Harris, who recently transferred from Auburn, aggressively approached one of the police officers at one point, lunging at him. The video showed him putting his hands up as he was briefly patted down before things began to get worse. Footage then showed words being exchanged and, once the Grove City officer placed a hand on the back of Harris’s head, a violent struggle erupted.
The Eastern Kentucky University redshirt sophomore then tried to get back into his vehicle as the officers attempted to arrest him. An angered Harris finally reacted by grabbing the police officer and lifting him up before dropping to the ground. Another officer arrived on the scene as the three attempted to subdue Harris for several minutes and eventually got him handcuffed.
The Georgia native faces a felony assault charge and misdemeanor resisting arrest, obstructing official business and disorderly conduct while intoxicated. The officer was fortunately not injured but, according to TMZ Sports, Harris was taken to a hospital following his arrest.
Cops claim he remained aggressive there … so he was sedated by medical personnel before he was eventually hauled off to jail.
Cops say in a search of Harris’ vehicle after the arrest, they found pills and a digital scale that is “consistent with drug use.” But the officers note in the report that Harris stated he was NOT taking medications or “illicit drugs.”
Harris signed with Auburn out of high school and transferred to Eastern Kentucky, which has not commented on the incident, this month.
Head coach Walt Wells spoke of Harris during EKU’s Signing Day class last week, saying the player “brings size, explosiveness and speed to the inside linebacker position.”
“He is a physical player,” Wells said of the four-star recruit who had offers from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, LSU, Oklahoma, Tennessee and others and was 15th ranked outside linebacker nationally by ESPN.
Harris is scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday.