A third person was arrested the night Miami Beach police beat two men in a hotel lobby, and the person, along with another passerby, is now threatening to sue, NBC 6 has learned.
Sharif Cobb, 27, was arrested on July 26 at the Royal Palm Hotel while recording police with his cell phone. The charges against him were dropped.
He was the second bystander who was arrested while filming the police.
As the investigation into Miami Beach police officers charged with the brutal arrest of two tourists in South Beach is ongoing, we take a closer look at videos released by the state attorney’s office. NBC 6’s Cristian Benavides Reports
âSir. Cobb was accused of resisting an officer, which he was not doing – he was only filming,â attorney David Frankel said.
A closing memo obtained by NBC 6 shows that Cobb was also initially charged with violating a Miami Beach ordinance that prohibits civilians from being within 20 feet of an officer “engaged in legal service” after received a warning.
In the memo, the state attorney’s office wrote that Cobb “was complying with the officer’s orders.”
Adding: “There is not enough evidence to prove that he intended to obstruct their investigation, harass or provoke the police. For these reasons, the case should be closed.”
“We will notify the city of our intention to press charges for constitutional violations,” Frankel said.
Frankel represents both Khalid Vaughn and Cobb, 28.
Vaughn was the spectator repeatedly punched by officers after being pinned to the ground while recording agents on his cell phone.
The two are friends from New York who were in town for the Rolling Loud music festival.
They plan to take legal action against the city and the police.
âI can’t tell you the damage, but people like this really trust the police and it’s hard for that to happen and affects them emotionally,â Frankel said.
The state attorney’s office said the incident began with the lawful arrest of 24-year-old Dalonta Crudup.
Officials say Crudup fled from police after allegedly hitting an officer with his scooter. But even after being handcuffed, Crudup was kicked by officers.
âWhat surprised them the most was that they wanted to document something they thought wasn’t right,â Frankel said of his clients.
Five police officers have been charged with assault and battery, but the charges could be stepped up.
Other officers could also be charged pending the outcome of the state prosecutor’s office investigation.