Rayne Valentine, a 32-year-old Brooklyn man, was leaving his job at the hospital when he was beaten bloody by police officers.
For Black Out Tuesday, we're focusing our editorial efforts on stories that we believe deserve more of a spotlight, including videos and photos from protestors on the front-lines. This one is truly disturbing.
As we continue to navigate through a global pandemic, it's important to keep the medical workers treating COVID-19 patients in our minds as they have been putting their own lives at risk to help us and our families. 32-year-old Rayne Valentine was leaving his job at a Brooklyn hospital on Saturday night when police officers left him laying on the ground in the fetal position, beaten and kicked with his hospital identification smeared in his own blood.
Valentine left work at approximately 11:45 PM on Saturday, noticing police officers clashing with protestors nearby. During his walk home, he noticed a "swarm" of officers chasing a kid in a yellow and black hoodie, taking out his phone and filming.
"I stayed out of the way," he says. "I was up against one of the closed shops just recording. I didn’t say anything to antagonize them. I was walking backwards as they shouted ‘back up.’ And then this cop pushed me, and there were other cops hitting me on my legs and stuff too, but my head is the only thing that got seriously injured."
When they shouted at him to "move back", he said he was moving back and that he was just trying to get home. The officers responded: "Well, you picked the wrong time to do that."
After ninety seconds, they stopped.
"I don’t know if it’s because they noticed my hospital ID or if it’s because they saw the blood, but they stopped, threw my phone at me, and I walked back to the hospital," says Valentine. "I was there for about seven hours after I got seven staples in my head and two CT scans."
Valentine has a military background and worked as a chef prior to the coronavirus outbreak. He took a job at the hospital because he felt helpless about all that was happening. He says that he is fortunate to be able to speak about it.