San Jose police

San Jose Officer Facing Assault Charge in Violent Arrest of Driver

SJPD Crime Generic
NBC Bay Area

A San Jose, California, police officer is facing an assault charge stemming from an incident in July in which he was seen on video beating a woman after he ordered her out of her car, prosecutors said.

The officer, Matthew Rodriguez, 36, was charged with unlawful assault and battery under color of authority, the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office said Tuesday. Rodriguez was seen on cellphone and body camera video dragging and kicking a female driver during the stop in July, according to the DA.

Rodriguez and another officer stopped the woman in a McDonald's parking lot over suspicion that the car's driver was wanted for evading police twice before, police said at the time. She was in the car with two young children and a female friend, who was not named.

Police said the officers used force after the driver "failed to comply with their commands."

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