SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (WJBK) - Earlier this week, FOX 2 broke the story of two men being roughed up at a Detroit gas station in May. Video recorded by one of the men showed the officers appearing to take their force too far but Chief James Craig said there's more to see. The men involved in the fight with officers say Craig is lying.
Mike Jackson and D'Marco Craft are suing Detroit Police after the May clash with officers Richard Billingslea and Hakeem Patterson. The men were at an east side gas station at 1:30 a.m. on May 31 when a shouting match led to Billingslea taking down Jackson.
On Thursday, police chief Craig said they're concerned about Billingslea's conduct but also say the video that Craft recorded doesn't tell the whole story.
"I saw the video from the store just prior to the deployment of chemical spray. The subject did take a swing at the officer," Craig said.
Craig would not release the video because it's part of an ongoing internal affairs investigation into the officers. Jackson said he never through a punch.
"I just don't appreciate the lie. I would not swing on no officer," he said.
Attorney Ari Kresch said the video Craft has, is the whole truth.
"Video does not lie. people lie. and in this situation, the video tells the whole story," Kresch said.
Jackson and Craft are also disputing Chief Craig's claim that police initiated the investigation into their officers.
"We went down to start the investigation, so Chief Craig says it was the lieutenant who started the investigation, no, we did, we went down to complain," Craft said.
Police have asked the Wayne County Prosecutor to determine whether criminal charges should be brought against Billingslea. But Kresch isn't satisfied and questions DPD's motives, as well as incidents in Billingslea's past.
"He was involved in a high speed chase last year that resulted in the death of two children. That incident, there were never any repercussion for that incident," Kresch said. "This suggestion that criminal charges might be dropped on Billingslea only happened because of the media. Because you could be sure if this video didn't exist, nothing would have happened."
Jackson countered speculation that he may have been intoxicated on the night the incident happened.
"All's I can imagine in my head is there's a nightmare going on before I got WWE'd on some Hohos and some Hostess. So I mean no alcohol affected me. I wasn't drinking, I was drinking water. I didn't know water affected you that much," he said.
Jackson is employed as a city bus driver and says he still has a good relationship with police, despite the run-in with Billingslea.
"He's supposed to be there to protect and serve, I'm just curious on that day who was he protecting and serving?" he asked.
The case against Billingslea and Craft is now in the hands of the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office. There is no timetable on that decision. Chief Craig says he plans to handle the incident internally as well.