The video of a Lorain man’s head striking and cracking a police cruiser windshield was featured in a new tear for rapper Ice Cube’s new song “Arrest The President.”
The 43-second video was released Nov. 6 and features various clips of President Donald Trump with Russian Premier Vladimir Putin; the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Va.; images of migrant children being held in internment camps; as well as images relating to former FBI Director James Comey interspersed with a clip of Ice Cube's, whose real name O’Shea Jackson, spitting lines into a microphone while smoking what appears to be a cigar.
The teaser ends with a the message, “Everybody go vote!,” and an ad for Ice Cube’s new album “Everythang’s Corrupt” which is scheduled for release Dec. 7.
The YouTube description of the video indicates the full song “Arrest The President” will be released Nov. 9.
In the moments where Pele Smith, 34, of Lorain, appears on screen, the rapper says “leave that boy alone.”
The footage is from a Lorain Police Department dash cam showing Smith’s face cracking the windshield of a police cruiser during a Sept. 4, 2014, arrest on East 34th Street near Palm Avenue on the city’s south side.
Lorain County Common Pleas Court records show this arrest led to an Oct. 16, 2014, indictment for tampering with evidence, obstructing official business and resisting arrest.
On Oct. 29, 2015, Smith pleaded guilty to these charges and was placed on community control for one year.
Smith is serving a three-year sentence in the Mansfield Correctional Institution on charges of drug trafficking, possessing criminal tools and having weapons under disability.
He is scheduled for release Feb. 22, 2021, according to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction.
In August 2016, Smith filed a civil suit seeking unspecified damages in Lorain County Common Pleas Court against the city of Lorain, police Chief Cel Rivera, Officer Zachary Ferenec, Officer Timothy Thompson, Officer Michael Gidich and Officer Miguel Salgado.
The case was moved to the Eastern Division of U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Ohio in Cleveland where District Judge Christopher Boyko is presiding.
The original complaint says Smith was walking on East 34th when then detectives Thompson and Gidich approached him in an unmarked vehicle and ordered him to walk over to it.
Smith approached the vehicle and raised his hands.
The officers exited their vehicle and “without provocation” wrestled Smith to the ground, the suit says.
Smith was handcuffed and sat on a curb near the vehicle.
Ferenec arrived in a marked police cruiser and Smith was lifted and walked to the cruiser, the suit says.
“Upon reaching Ferenec’s vehicle, (Smith) was grabbed by Ferenec and without provocation, slammed (Smith’s) face into the windshield of his patrol car, shattering the windshield,” the suit says.
After Smith was put in the cruiser, his suit claims the officers taunted him.
The suit made five claims for relief: that Ferenec, Thompson and Gidich used excessive force violating Smith’s Fourth Amendment Rights; that Ferenec, Thompson and Gidich falsely imprisoned Smith violating his Fourth and 14th Amendment Rights; that Rivera and the city have customs and policies that cause constitutional violations; that Ferenec, Thompson, Gidich and Salgado were grossly negligent; and that Rivera and the city negligently retained the officers.
The defendants in the case denied the allegations in their reply to the complaint.
The case has yet to be concluded, but in July 2018, Boykins granted summary judgement in the case on some of the claims against some of the defendants.
Specifically, he ruled in favor of Thompson and Gidich on the excessive force claim, in favor of all the officers in the false imprisonment claim, in favor of Salgado on the gross negligence claim and in favor of Rivera and the city in the negligent retention claim.
That decision is being challenged by appeal in the Sixth Circuit Appeals Court.
Court records do not specify the next court date or deadline.
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