For the past nine months Queensland Police have claimed their officers were assaulted, leading to the brutal arrest of two men last year, but now footage has emerged showing what really happened.
The incident occurred in December 2019 outside a restaurant in Paradise Point, Gold Coast, where friends Peter Kleinschafer and Oskars Sarkans were eating.
They were confronted by police after staff at a nearby business called to complain about “bikies” urinating in a nearby alleyway.
It was here that police claimed the men became aggressive, leading to both men being charged with public nuisance and obstructing police.
Mr Sarkans was also charged with assaulting police and Mr Kleinschafer was given an additional charge of contravening a direction of police.
The two men were due to face the Southport Magistrates Court on Tuesday but the trial was called off after new footage emerged of the incident.
The video shows Mr Kleinschafer talking with a police officer before he is unexpectedly pepper-sprayed at point-blank range and shoved to the ground by one of the cops.
Mr Sarkans is then pepper-sprayed as well and also shoved down onto the concrete.
One of the officers then appears to put Mr Kleinschafer in a choke hold while attempting to handcuff him, before pushing him back to the ground and kneeling on his head.
Just metres away, Mr Sarkans is also being knelt on by two officers as they arrest him.
The brutal incident left Mr Kleinschafer unable to work for eight months.
Up until now the police have continually claimed they were attacked by the men.
Mr Sarkans and Mr Kleinschafer’s lawyer, Campbell MacCallum of Moloney MacCallum Abdelshahied Lawyers, branded the arrest “disgraceful”.
“I think the behaviour from the police on this occasion was disgraceful,” he told Nine.
“I think it is a matter of police justifying what they have done by charging these two particular people.”
Mr MacCallum also insisted neither of his clients were associated with any outlaw motorcycle gangs.
Police are expected to drop the charges against the men and issue them with tickets for public urination.
Mr MacCallum told The Gold Coast Bulletin that just before the arrest occurred Mr Kleinschafer and Mr Sarkans were asking officers what would happen with their half-eaten meals as they had been asked to leave the restaurant.
He said police used “excessive force” and branded it a case of “police brutality”.
“You can easily see that both the persons attacked by the police were standing in a non-threatening manner having conversations with police,” Mr MacCallum said.
“All I can gather is one of the police officers has had a rush of blood, sprayed one of the persons and then the second police officer has sprayed the second person.”
Police have previously reviewed the matter but a second review has been ordered in the wake of the video being released.
Mr Sarkans addressed the incident in an Instagram post yesterday, thanking his lawyer for the “great result”.
“Police brutality is becoming a routine now in Australia and yes people you need to fight back,” he wrote.
“Not a statement that all police officers are the same just too many of them are just not suitable to do their actual job.
“Too much enforcing not enough policing and stereotyping people.”