The country was shocked when a motorcycle riding gang dragged a father from his SUV in front of his wife and 2-year-old daughter and beat him and slashed him in the face. The incident started when one biker slowed down in front of the car, causing the dad to hit him. When other bikers didn't feel like he stopped, they chased after him on their bikes. After being surrounded by dozens of bikers and fearing for his life, the dad panicked and drove his SUV through the crowd, injuring three bikers, one of whom is reportedly paralyzed. Now word comes out about something astonishing -- reportedly up to five police officers were involved in the biker gang, and yet did nothing as dad Alexian Lien was assaulted.
Police are reportedly investigating the fact that up to five police officers -- all of them "undercover" -- were riding with the gang that day, trying to get tips on "criminal activity." And at least one of those officers witnessed what was happening to Lien as he was dragged from his car and allegedly pummeled by the angry mob -- but he felt he could do nothing without blowing his cover.
Reportedly, after watching Lien being beaten, and hearing that cops were on the way, he left the scene. He reportedly claims he didn't intervene because he didn't want to get in trouble for firing his weapon while undercover.
Well, I admit I don't understand the finer points of when and if you can break cover, but these accounts make me wonder if the cops were truly undercover -- or just riding. One report says the officer who witnessed Lien's beating likes to ride bikes when off duty and that he didn't tell his superiors what he witnessed for days after the attack.
A cop who witnessed this attack and did nothing -- but who was not officially undercover -- would have failed in his duty as an officer in my book. It remains to be seen what might happen here, as apparently the officers' presence is being investigated.
Meanwhile, the man believed to be the main attacker, Reginald Chance, who is shown hitting the SUV's window with his helmet in video that captured most of the incident, has been arrested.
Do you think the cops should have helped?
Update: The officer in question has reportedly been suspended, stripped of his gun and badge pending further investigation.
Image via ABCNews/Flickr