Martese Johnson Not Belligerent Or Drunk At Time Of His Arrest
Martese Johnson, the UVA student who was brutally assaulted by ABC officers on St. Patrick’s Day, was “polite and cordial” at the time of his arrest.
Furthermore he was not intoxicated when he was slammed face first onto the ground and wounded so badly that he needed 10 stitches.
The 20-year-old black University of Virginia student bloodied by alcohol-control officers outside a bar last week was denied entry after a “polite and cordial” conversation because he named the wrong ZIP code for the address on the Illinois license he presented, the pub says.
Johnson “did not appear to be intoxicated in the least” and simply walked off after being turned away, the Trinity Irish Pub said in a statement released Saturday night. It called reports that bar staff were “belligerent” toward Johnson or that he was belligerent to management “patently untrue.”
A Breathalyzer test showed Johnson was not intoxicated.
In its version of events, the pub said co-owner Kevin Badke was at the door just after midnight Wednesday to monitor the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations and be sure underage drinkers did not enter. He said the ABC had alerted the bar beforehand that it would be watched closely because “they were Irish.”
Until 10 p.m., the pub admits patrons of all ages. After that, “under no circumstances do we allow anyone under the age of 21 to enter the establishment,” the statement said.
Johnson had been in line to enter around 12:30 a.m., and Badke, who is from the south side of Chicago, was at the door helping check identifications. Badke asked Johnson for his ZIP code, a key question used to catch fake IDs.
Johnson’s answer didn’t match the 2011 Illinois license he presented, and “probably realizing the reason for the error, stated that he had moved,” the statement said.
After a brief “cordial and respectful” conversation, Badke said he couldn’t let Johnson in and handed him back his ID.
“He was just disappointed he didn’t get in. He was just acting like a normal college kid,” Badke said in a interview. “It was very cordial. I actually asked him what high school he went to.”
Moments after Johnson walked away, video shows three uniformed ABC special agents confronting him. While showing them his Illinois ID, he is grabbed by the neck and pushed face down onto the brick sidewalk just steps from the Trinity entrance.
Johnson can be heard yelling that he was a U.Va. student. “How did this happen, you (bleeping) racists!” Johnson screams.
The ABC arrest report describes Johnson as “belligerent” and “very agitated.” The arresting officers have been reassigned to administrative duties during the investigation, which Gov. Terry McAuliffe is monitoring.
Yet another example of respectability politics not meaning ish, Martese was “cordial” and “respectful” and still got his head bashed open.