The 21-year-old man who broke his leg during an altercation with Pasadena police in November spoke out Wednesday, saying he was compliant with the officers who were arresting him.
Christopher Ballew appeared at a news conference about the incident that happened at a parking lot on Nov. 9, which the Pasadena Police Department said is under investigation for possible “use of force.”
The officers stopped Ballew because of a missing front license plate and tinted windows, according to a city spokesperson. Ballew’s lawyer, John Burton, named Jerry Esparza and Zachary Lujan as the officers involved.
“As far as I know, these officers are still patrolling, when really they should be facing criminal charges,” Burton said at Wednesday’s news conference.
Police said Ballew was resisting arrest and later booked him on suspicion of assault. But the Los Angeles County District’s Attorney’s Office has said it would not prosecute Ballew on any charges stemming from the incident due to lack of evidence.
After a graphic cellphone video that captured the ordeal sparked public outcry, authorities released dashcam and bodycam videos that showed the moment Ballew’s leg was broken.
“I was confused,” Ballew said in the news conference. “I didn’t know what was going on.”
Ballew denied resisting and running away from the officers, saying, ” I complied with everything they asked me.”
Asked about claims that he escalated the incident by taking one officer’s baton, Ballew said he only grabbed the baton after he was hit.
“I grabbed the baton after the second strike,” Ballew said.
Ballew has filed a lawsuit against the city and the Pasadena Police Department for injuries he sustained.