More than 100,000 have watched the short film posted on Facebook, which shows the man being abandoned by the police officers after being made to remove his artificial legs and strip to his underpants. As the policemen walk away, a passer-by who filmed the scene on his smartphone is heard shouting: “Officer, officer, we need you. Officer, turn back please. This is humiliation, It is not normal.”
The man who made the video, Jean-Didier Bakekolo, told French media: “I found myself witnessing a police search of exceptional brutality. The officers forced this man to undress and left him struggling to put back his artificial legs…He was ill-treated to the point of being forced to sit on the ground partially undressed.”
The incident, which happened on the underground platforms at the Gare de Lyon in Paris on Monday night, comes at a time when relations between police and public in France are already strained.
Police have been accused of acting with unnecessary violence to control a fringe of aggressive demonstrators during left-wing protests against plans to reform French employment law. Police unions have retorted that the violence comes mostly from the protesters and that several officers have been seriously hurt.
A police union, Alliance, has called for a demonstration by French police on 18 May to protest against what they see as a “campaign of anti-police hatred” by the public.