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City Officials Question Officer's Actions During Subway Fight With Teenagers

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Some city officials say an officer may have gone too far in an altercation that sent several teenagers to jail.

CBS2's Lisa Rozner reports now there are calls for an investigation.

Police say a brawl spilled into the Jay Street-MetroTech subway station in Brooklyn just after 2 p.m. Friday.

The NYPD says several teens resisted arrest and one even punched an officer, but that was not caught on video.

Video does show a cop punching a teenager. Seconds later, that same cop appears to swing at another teen. Someone in the video can be heard saying, "He didn't do nothing. He didn't do nothing."

teens subway brawl
(Credit: CBS2)

Police say five people were arrested. Charges include resisting arrest and assault on a police officer.

But Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, a former cop, says the one officer appears to have escalated the matter. He's calling on the NYPD to place him on modified assignment pending an investigation.

"To me, he went beyond the call of duty," he said. "You're not in a boxing match. That is not the goal, and what I saw in that video is clearly outside of any training that I ever received in a police department."

City Council Speaker Corey Johnson tweeted, "This video shows a situation that clearly spun out of control, and the public has a right to know how this happened. We need a full investigation, and discipline against any and all officers that acted inappropriately or used excessive force."

Public Advocate Jumaane Williams also took to Twitter, asking, "WHY is a presumably trained [NYPD] officer punching young men (plural) in the face."

But Darrin Porcher, an NYPD lieutenant for 20 years, including time in the internal affairs bureau, says you can't jump to conclusions.

"If that officer deemed that that was the minimum amount of force necessary to take this person into custody or prevent a further assault, then it would be fine," he said.

Subway passengers who spoke to CBS2 had differing opinions on the matter.

"The police shouldn't be, like, recklessly using force against teens ... But if the reason was legit, maybe the police had a reason to do so," Brooklyn Heights resident Ethan Zhao said.

"Honestly, what they did really wasn't needed," one man said.

"They don't have to do that. I think it's too much," another man said.

The NYPD says the video doesn't show the entirety of the incident and the department is conducting a review.

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