Man Says Cop's "Tip" Turned Out to Be Punch in the Face

A Coral Gables officer was arrested Sunday for allegedly giving Justin Ahearn a fat lip

By Jessica Sick
|  Sunday, Nov 14, 2010  |  Updated 11:04 AM EDT
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Man Says Cop's "Tip" Turned Out to Be Punch in the Face

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A Coral Gables cop was arrested for battery Sunday for allegedly hitting a water sports employee in Marathon last month.

Justin Ahearn, 25, claimed he met Edward Claughton, 39 and a Coral Gables police officer, on the beach in front of the Tranquility Bay hotel before the incident and spoke with him for about 20 minutes. Later, Ahearn said he received a phone call from Claughton, who said he wanted to give Ahearn a tip.

When Ahearn returned, he said Claughton immediately approached him in the parking lot and began to shove him, striking him in the face. A witness claimed he saw Claughton push Ahearn several times and call him names.

The witness also claimed that Ahearn put his hands behind his back and told Claughton to hit him if he wanted, and that Ahearn refused to fight back and asked Claughton to forgive him if there had been a misunderstanding.

It is unclear what led up to the altercation, though Ahearn did admit he may have "been sarcastic" to Claughton when they spoke earlier that day. Claughton did not give a statement at the time.
 

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