Another SPD excessive force case headed to trial

Another SPD excessive force case headed to trial »Play Video
SEATTLE -- Another Seattle police arrest is under scrutiny, and a federal judge says the suspect can sue.

That 2008 arrest, which was caught on video, has sparked another debate on the use of force by the police.

The footage shows the officer summoning the man from across the parking lot. The man is seen walking over to the patrol car and placing his hands on the hood as the officer instructs him to do. The officer is then seen hovering over the man, and demanding the man's hands. When the man is slow to react, the officer is seen slamming the man's head into the hood of the car.

In court filings, Officer Kevin Oshikawa-Clay insists suspect John Kita resisted arrest. The officer says his actions were by the book, dictated by his police training.

Clay told the court he saw Kita tackle his own girlfriend to the ground in a parking lot. Kita denied the claim and was acquitted. He now believes the dash cam video will prove the officer used excessive force.

Kita insists he never resisted arrest and got hurt during the takedown.

The officer and the city asked a federal judge to have Kita's lawsuit thrown out, but the judge refused, stating in a motion, "Because this court cannot tell for certain which party is right, this is an easy decision: The jury shall decide."

Neither side wanted to comment. The judge says all parties will meet next month to set a trial date.