Virginia Beach officers will not face criminal charges after use of force video

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UPDATE: After police conducted a formal review, they say there is no evidence to support a criminal charge.  According to the Commonwealth Attorney's Office, no criminal charges will be brought against the officer for the use of force arrest and no criminal charges for tampering with evidence. 

Virginia Beach, Va. - Virginia Beach Police Chief Jim Cervera spoke Monday on the investigation into the "Use of Force" incident that occurred during the arrest of a 17-year-old during a traffic stop back in January. That questionable "Use of Force" and arrest was caught on video by the driver of the vehicle, who then uploaded it to her Facebook page where it has been seen nearly two million times.

The incident took place on January 10th. Courtney Griffith, 18, says she was driving while her 17-year-old friend Brandon was sitting in the backseat. She says she was pulled over for a broken license plate light, but the officer told them to get out of the car saying he smelled marijuana. That’s when the video recording began.

Chief Cervera says the two officers involved in the arrest are being investigated. He says the use of pepper spray during the arrest was warranted, but the use of the Taser was not.

It had also been investigated whether one of the officers had deleted the video that Courtney recorded. Chief Cervera acknowledges that the officer did turn the camera off, but that right now, it can't be determined when or if the video was deleted.

The Commonwealth Attorney's Office reviewed the issue of the video being deleted and determined that further investigation was needed to determine whether a crime was committed. They requested that VBPD continue to investigate that issue before they determine whether anyone can be prosecuted.

The Commonwealth's Attorney's Officer also reviewed the use of force to determine whether the officers criminally or appropriately according to VBPD policy and procedure. They determined that there was no evidence of a crime so the officers will not be prosecuted.


Virginia Beach Police investigating forceful viral video arrest

Did Virginia Beach Police try to delete evidence?


  • mark pen

    You’re going to see a lot more of this, but it’s not going to end well for those that resist arrest. & anyone that encourages this will have that on their hands. So let the radicalization of todays youth begin, it won’t take long for it to be over. Resisting arrest is just that & being a PITA will not change anything, except to get them an additional charge of resisting arrest. So let the games begin.

  • roadkingrdr

    This kid absolutely is responsible for the treatment he received by law enforcement. The Chief ought to be supporting his officers – were they supposed to simply let him be on his way because he refused to comply. If he were my son, the REAL discipline would begin when I got him out of custody. I hope he sits in juvey a good long time. And the girl driving was may daughter (and she was under 18) – her driving days would be over for quite some time. Why does WTKR insist on making heroes out of punks?

    • 80s kid

      Because a crime was committed when that cop tried to delete evidence of his wrongdoing. When is everyone going to wake up to the emerging fascism rotting away our government? The beach has the worst police. Babys to eager to dish out punishment on everyone who doesn’t conform to their outdated ideals of law and order. It’s about control. We don’t need them. We can handle things internally.

  • Charlie

    This Chief needs to step down and the officers need to turn their backs to him. The Chief is a coward and will not stand up for his officers. Please Officers let the hoodlums and drunks run amuck during beach week, make no arrest because your cowardly Chief will not support you if you have to use force. This pathetic sorry excuse for a Police Chief needs to be forced out of a job, you are a coward who doesn’t deserve a badge. Please Chief show a demonstration of how you would remove a suspect out of a car that won’t get out and swings at your arms when you reach in for him. Gutless wonder.

  • ugh

    shoulda tased him again – then shot him – and then cut off his head, put it on a spear and parade it through every high school in vb. and down to the oceanfront for an extended tour.

    • Josh

      Although im on the cops side with this one, the VBPD is a joke! Look at their national rankings. The only thing they care about is parking tickets and for some reason harrassing/preventing anyone who tries to enjoy the sport of fishing in the city. “Food for thought” VB has on average, only 20 homicides a yea, yet close to 2 on average become cold cases and are never solved or bothered with because there is no active cold case unit. New York city has close to around 300 homicides per year, yet on average less than 2 per year go cold. Take a look on the vbgov site for yourself and you will surely be disgusted reading the scenarios that lead to so many of VBs unslolved murders. Heck they needed another city in another state, investigating into a serial killer in their area to connect the dots and notify VB that the 20 female killings in the 80s was the work of a serial killer. Freedom of speech but remember no swearing….

  • 70s kid

    How can the kid be “resisting arrest” when the officer specifically says that he is not arresting him?

    • steve

      Listen to the rest of the video. He was being detained at first then arrested later. If you listen to the rest of the video you can hear the dialogue when they’re trying to handcuff him.

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