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April 4, 2014

A stomach turning video was released of two police officers waylaying a mentally ill man during an arrest in St. Louis last month.

The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department is investigating an incident in which two police officers are seen on videotape punching and striking a man. The man, Mario Crump, is reported to have a history of mental illness.

Crump's family had called police for assistance because he was acting erratically. It is not clear what happened before and after the 35-second video, which can be seen in its entirety here.

According to New 5, the people who know Mr. Crump said there is no way that he could have possibly deserved that beating.

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Mike Keller is the executive director of Independence Center, an organization in St. Louis that helps people with mental health issues live and work in their communities. Mr. Crump happens to be a client at the Independence Center.

He says the video shows a need for more police training in what is know as CIT (Crisis Intervention Training) to distinguish the between what he sees as criminal behavior and a need for help.

"I want to give the police whom I have an affinity for the benefit of the doubt, but that video was soul-scarring," Keller said.

Did these cops not have any other means of deterring this man's resistance other than throwing haymaking blows with batons and punches to the face?