Police Use Stun Gun on Black Man Buying Walmart Bike in Viral Video

Authorities have defended the actions of two Pennsylvania police officers who were filmed using a stun gun against a Black man inside a Walmart store.

Video on social media shows the confrontation between suspect Stanley Gracius and two white Wyomissing Police officers at a Walmart store on July 20.

During the clip, Gracius can be heard asking "why are you doing this to me" while the officers attempt to detain him.

Gracius adds "I've paid for my stuff.... I have a receipt" while being wrestled to the ground by the officers, as well as continuing to ask why he is being arrested.

A second video uploaded to Reddit shows the officers deploying a stun gun on Gracius while his hands are behind his back while he repeatedly urges "please stop."

Twitter user @labousaab44, who posted the clip which has since been viewed more than 340,000 times, said police arrived after Gracius test rode a bike he had purchased inside the store.

"The kind man was test riding a bike through the store while playing some music and telling random strangers he hopes they have a great day and complimenting them," she tweeted. "He was absolutely no bother to anyone."

today in walmart (1135 berkshire blvd in Wyomissing, PA) the police unnecessarily used excessive force by tazing a black man who did NOTHING WRONG. (1) pic.twitter.com/MJ7q3vOPu0

— layla (@labousaab44) July 21, 2020

One of the officers then allegedly attempted to arrest Gracius while he was at the register paying for his item.

"There was no use for the tazing as he was calmly trying to reason with the officers," the Twitter user wrote. "After a few minutes he was taken outside and was forced into a cop car where he started to resist because he still had no idea what was going on.

"He kept calmly repeating that he did not understand why he was being arrested and harassed the way he was."

The officers are also recorded tying the suspect's legs with what appeared to be a leather belt when he refused to voluntarily get into a patrol vehicle in the parking lot.

The Berks County District Attorney Office said an independent review of the incident at the Wyomissing Walmart found that the officers "showed restraint, acted professionally, and did a good job in de-escalating the situation."

In a statement, the DA's office said Wyomissing Police were called to the Walmart following reports of a man "playing loud music and yelling profanities" at others in the store.

The Walmart store manager told police that she had asked the suspect to leave because he was "weaving back and forth in the aisles, hitting some shopping carts and almost hitting other shoppers" before paying for his bike.

After refusing to leave the store, Gracius is alleged to have told the store manager: "You're not going to tell me what to do."

"The defendant was detained by the Wyomissing Police and at all times during the encounter, the Wyomissing Police showed restraint, acted professionally, and did a good job deescalating the situation with the defendant, Stanley Gracius," the Berks County District Attorney Office said.

"Mr Gracius did not in any manner abide by the requests of not only the store manager of Walmart, but also the requests of the officers themselves.

"Based on our review of this incident, the officers of the Wyomissing Police Department acted appropriately when they arrested this individual who was causing a disturbance in the Walmart store."

In a statement to Newsweek, Walmart said that while they understand the "strong reactions to the video showing the altercation between the customer and police," what is being shared online do not show the incidents that led them to call the police..

"This week police were called to our store in Wyomissing, PA after a customer caused a sustained disruption leading managers to believe the safety of those inside the store could become at risk," a spokesperson for Walmart said. "This also included inappropriate behavior such as threatening associates and customers and the use of offensive language.

"Our focus remains providing a welcoming shopping experience for our customers in Wyomissing."

Gracius has been charged with aggravated assault, simple assault, disarming law enforcement officer, resisting arrest, defiant trespass and disorderly conduct.

Update 7/23/20: This article has been updated with comment from Walmart.

A view outside a Walmart retail store is seen on July 16, 2020 in Pembroke Pines, Florida. Video has appeared showing officers use a stun gun on a man in a Pennsylvania Walmart after purchasing a bicycle. Johnny Louis/Getty