ASHEVILLE, N.C. (WSPA) – The Asheville Police Department released on Thursday body camera footage of the May 13 arrest of Devon Whitmire.

The department said it wanted to release the video “in the interest of transparency.”

According to the police department, on May 8, a city resident called the city’s police dispatch in regards to him making threats against members of his family and causing property damage.

Officers reportedly responded to the call but were unable to locate Whitmire. The same day, a warrant for his arrest was issued.

Five days later, Whitmire was found on Livingston Street in Asheville.

The body camera video shows Whitmire lie about his identity, claiming to be his twin brother. When police do confirm his identity and tell him he has a warrant for his arrest, he asks ““can y’all just back up, so I can get my gun off of me?”

Whitmire refuses to tell police where he is keeping a firearm and when a group of officers attempt to detain him, he shoves one and is wrestled to the ground.

While officers searched him for a firearm, which he did not have, Whitmire spits at officers, and at one point attempts to kick one.

During the arrest, a large crowd gathered while police wrestled with Whitmire on the ground, and recordings shared online appeared to show an officer holding Whitmire down with a forearm across his neck. The body camera video shows the officer kept their arm first between Whitmire’s head and the pavement, and later across his body, but planted on the ground to support their weight.

Whitmire was charged with two counts of assault on a government official inflicting serious injury, three counts of assault on a government official, three counts of malicious conduct of a prisoner and resisting, delaying, and obstructing.

The Asheville Police Department reviewed the arrest of Whitmire and determined that the officers’ actions were reasonable and necessary.  

The incident was then referred to the Buncombe County District Attorney’s Office, which confirmed the findings of APD’s internal review and cited no probable cause of excessive use of force by officers.

The full video of the arrest is available below. Be aware that it contains coarse language.