The Shocking Takedown of James Blake

Editor’s Note: This article previously appeared in a different format as part of The Atlantic’s Notes section, retired in 2021.

Surveillance footage was just released showing the former tennis pro being thrown to the ground by plainclothes police:

According to police, James Blake on Wednesday had been misidentified by a witness as a suspect in a credit-card fraud case when he was tackled, detained, and handcuffed in broad daylight while waiting for a car to take him to the U.S. Open. The incident, which has already raised concerns about race and excessive force, is likely to come under further scrutiny given the graphic nature of the video.

On Thursday, NYPD chief Bill Bratton offered a private apology to Blake, inelegantly adding the suspect wanted in the case “looks like the twin brother of Mr. Blake.” Meanwhile, James Frascatore, the officer who tackled Blake, was moved to desk duty in the wake of the incident. According to WYNC, Frascatore has a record of civilian complaints against him.