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Greensboro City Council Calls For Review Of Excessive Force Case

A screengrab of body camera footage from a second officer at the scene shows Officer Travis Cole subduing Dejuan Yourse.
Greensboro Police Department
A screengrab of body camera footage from a second officer at the scene shows Officer Travis Cole subduing Dejuan Yourse.

The Greensboro city council says state officials should revoke the law enforcement license and reconsider charges against a white police officer who violated the department's use-of-force policy in a confrontation with a black man.

Host Frank Stasio speaks with Greensboro News and Record reporter Margaret Moffett.

The decision comes more than three months after the encounter between former Officer Travis Cole and Dejuan Yourse outside the home of Yourse's mother. 

The city council showed the video publicly for the first time Monday during a special session.

Warning: Video contains graphic language and content


Cole's body-camera footage shows him approaching Yourse as he responds to a call in which someone falsely thought Yourse was trying to break into the home. Yourse provides an ID to a second officer at the scene.

The exchange becomes more heated after Yourse suggests they speak with a neighbor to prove he lives at the residence. Cole pushes Yourse back on the porch and orders him to sit down.

YOURSE: Why are you doing this, man?COLE: I said sit down.

YOURSE: But why are you talking to me like that, bro? The address is on my wallet.

COLE: Look, Dejuan...

YOURSE: ...I mean, on my ID. 

Cole wrestles Yourse to the ground moments later. The other officer's body camera shows Cole punching Yourse in the face.

Yourse repeatedly shouts, "I'm not resisting."

An internal investigation found that Cole violated four department policies, including one that addresses the use of force.

Police Chief Wayne Scott addressed Yourse directly at Monday's meeting.

"This is not indicative of what we as a police department want our citizens to experience. I'm sorry, and it was wrong," Scott said.

Cole has since resigned from the department. Protesters disrupted the meeting at times, and several called for more police accountability during the public comment session.

Copyright 2016 North Carolina Public Radio

Will Michaels started his professional radio career at WUNC.
Katy Barron
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.