Florida Police Officers Filmed Taunting Bloodied Man, Drinking His Gatorade

Footage has emerged of a bloodied and handcuffed suspect being openly taunted by police officers in Florida who drank from the man's soda while he pleaded to be taken to hospital.

In a video obtained by Local 10 News, Khalid Vaughn, 28, is shown with blood running down his face telling officers he did nothing to warrant his arrest.

According to the news outlet, Vaughn was taken down and handcuffed by police while trying to film the arrest of another man, Dalonta Crudup, 24, on his cellphone inside the Royal Palm Hotel on South Beach on July 26.

3 Miami Beach police officers are facing felony charges after beating a man who was filming them making an arrest in the Royal Palm Hotel. One of the officers even drank the man’s Gatorade in front of him after he was handcuffed. pic.twitter.com/DJU3DlFaAc

— Ron Filipkowski (@RonFilipkowski) October 1, 2021

The incident involving Vaughn came to light on social media after former Federal Prosecutor Ron Filipowski shared a clip of the Local 10 News report with over 216,000 followers on Twitter. At the time of writing, the video has been viewed nearly 30,000 times and retweeted by 1,200 users.

In the video, a visibly distressed Vaughn can be heard telling officers "You all beat me for no reason." An unnamed officer can be heard responding "We beat you for a reason" on the clip, which comes from a police body camera.

The handcuffed Vaughn continues to plead his innocence on the footage. "I didn't resist. I wasn't arrested," he says. "I backed up. You all said back up. Somebody said 20 feet and I backed up. And what happened? All of you charged me and beat me."

At this point, an officer can be heard interjecting to tell Vaughn to "stop crying."

"Stop crying? Look at my face," he replies. "You all did that [expletive] for no reason," Vaughn said." An officer responds: "You chose your destiny."

Vaughn is heard rejecting this claim and expressing disbelief at the officer's remarks. "I did not. I backed up," he says. "That's kind of crazy. What do you mean I chose my destiny? I backed up."

Later in the video, an officer can be seen taking Vaughn's Gatorade and loudly gulping it while Vaughn asks: "Can you take me to the hospital? I can feel myself bleeding."

Responding to the officer's deliberately audible drinking, Vaughn says: "I don't know what you are getting out of that" to which the officer replies "I'm getting hydrated." Towards the end of the footage, another voice can be heard telling Vaughn to go back to New York where he is from.

Look at this with the taking of the Gatorade! You can hear the officer with a loud expression of quenching his thirst. @WPLGLocal10 #Exclusive pic.twitter.com/TO1nPmwt85

— Rosh Lowe (@roshlowespeaks) October 1, 2021

Body camera video footage also confirmed Vaughn did appear to comply with officers at the scene asking he move back, just prior to being attacked. The state attorney's office concurred with this view and has since dropped any charges of resisting an arrest with violence and impeding a police investigation.

However, five Miami Beach officers present at the scene have been charged with battery with three also facing felony charges related to the arrest of Crudup and Vaughn.

The Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office announced last month that Sgt. Jose Perez and Officer Kevin Perez would be charged with one count of felony battery each while Officer Steven Cerrano would be charged with one count of official misconduct.

Serrano and officers Robert Sabater and David Rivas are also facing misdemeanor battery charges.

Prosecutors took the decision following an investigation into the incident, which Vaughn had been attempting to film prior to his own arrest.

Crudup was arrested on accusations of a scooter parking violation and that he struck an officer with his vehicle. He was initially charged with battery and aggravated assault but those charges have since been reduced to fleeing and eluding police and reckless driving.

Caught on video and only on @WPLGLocal10.
He filmed a tough take down- eventually had his charges dropped. Now video of @MiamiBeachPD cops seemingly taunting him, telling him “not to cry.” “You chose your destiny” And even taking his Gatorade! #exclusive pic.twitter.com/ZyQkwhBgB3

— Rosh Lowe (@roshlowespeaks) October 1, 2021

Surveillance footage from inside the Royal Palm Hotel shows Crudup being ordered onto the ground at gunpoint by officers. He complies and is shown on the ground with his hands behind his back before more than a dozen officers enter and surround him.

Prosecutors say body camera footage then shows the handcuffed Crudup being kicked multiple times. It also shows Vaughn being tackled to the floor and repeatedly punched despite moving back as requested.

Miami Beach police told Local 10 News: "We remain committed to the process and allowing the investigation to take its course."

Newsweek has contacted Miami Beach police for comment.

Police brutality remains a constant cause for concern in the U.S.

Just a few weeks ago, two officers in San Antonio, Texas came in for criticism after arresting a Black man out jogging who was mistaken for a domestic violence suspect.

In another incident, a 16-year-old Black girl was filmed being bodyslammed by a school resource officer in an action that drew widespread criticism.

A police car with its lights on.
Stock photo of a police car with its lights on - a group of Miami Beach officers have been filmed mocking a handcuffed suspect. MattGush/Getty