Caught on Camera: Wallingford officer punches suspect in custody

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WALLINGFORD --  In June, the Wallingford Police Department responded to a domestic violence call.

According to police, during the call they encountered Gary King who was drunk and had at one point pulled a knife and struggled with the officers.

On Tuesday, FOX61 obtained cruiser camera video of the altercation from the Wallingford Police Department.

The video is from an internal cruiser camera system where an officer wears a microphone that continuously broadcasts back to the car. The officers can be heard struggling with the suspect and a knife is mentioned several times. As police struggled to get him in the cruiser, an officer crossed the line and punched King in the face. The punch seen in the video, knocked King out cold.

Once unconscious and in the cruiser, police took King to Mid-State Medical Center, where he was treated and released and then booked.

For his role in the domestic incident and the struggle with the cops, King was arrested on numerous charges and eventually pleaded guilty to assaulting a police officer.

Proactive measures put in place helped police administrators find the video. During a routine review of video, a Wallingford Police Supervisor noticed the punch and notified Wallingford Police Chief William Wright.

Wright then notified the Connecticut States Attorney’s Office, who then investigated the incident. While the State’s Attorney did not feel criminal charges applied, the Wallingford Police Department still conducted their own internal investigation.

As a result, Officer Joseph Smith was suspended for two weeks for excessive use of force.