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Use Of Force Expert Weighs In On St. Paul Skyway Arrest

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Questions surrounding police judgment have plagued Minnesota officers this week.

On more than one occasion, calls to investigate suspicious activity have led to the use of force.

Chris Lollie shot a video, that has now gone viral, as St. Paul Police arrested him in a Skyway in January.

Lollie refused to give officers his name.

Police say they used their Tasers after he pulled away and did not comply with their orders.

It's the question many want answered.

Do you have to comply when a police officer asks to see your identification?

"You have to produce your ID, especially under those circumstances. They were called to investigate a suspicious person call," retired police officer Joe Dutton said.

Retired Golden Valley police officer Joe Dutton is a use of force expert.

He says when officers are called out to investigate a suspicious person it is their duty to find out who that person is and why they are there.

"When you start debating the police, and when you start becoming non-compliant, you're telling the police that you've got something to hide and they want to find out what you're hiding," Dutton said.

Dutton says officers have contact with hundreds of thousands of people daily and most interactions end without the use of force.

He says when officers are called to check out a suspicious person they do not have time to gauge who they are going to make contact with.

They just investigate whoever is considered "suspicious," as in the case in Ramsey where officers had to check on suspicious persons in a car in the parking lot of a daycare.

"The individual fled from that vehicle. Officers pursued. The individual at this point displayed a gun, as far as I know that is a deadly force issue. The officers answer to that with deadly force," Dutton said.

In Chris Lollie's case, Dutton believes if he had shown his ID there would have been no use of force by police.

He does not believe Lollie's race is an issue in this case.

"It would have happened no matter what the race of the individual was," Dutton said.

The Saint Paul Police Federation issued a statement in support of the actions of the officers in that January incident.

Lollie's attorney said he will file a civil rights lawsuit in federal court.

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