BREAKING COUNTY NEWS: Investigation after police officer filmed hitting member of the public

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Police have launched an investigation after an officer was filmed hitting a member of the public from Eastbourne that he was trying to arrest in Newhaven.

Sussex Police says the man had become violent and had grabbed the officer outside Poundstretcher in Newhaven town centre last night (Friday).

There have been calls for the officer involved to be suspended while an investigation by the force’s professional standards department is carried out.

Police say they were called by a member of the public concerned about a man slumped on the ground at 6.30pm.

Two PCSOs attended the scene and were verbally abused, say police, and called for back up.

“A police officer joined them and they tried to get the man to leave the area and even offered to get him a taxi,” said a spokesperson.

“He then became violent and grabbed the officer.”

Chief Inspector Rosie Ross said police were aware of the video that had been posted online of the man’s arrest and while no complaint has been received, it has referred the matter to the professional standards department.

The officer also said that approved techniques used in arrests could appear “very robust”.

A 40-year-old man from Eastbourne has been charged with being drunk and disorderly in a public place and assaulting a police officer,