Activists want federal investigation into CHP beating case

WILLOWBROOK, LOS ANGELES COUNTY (KABC) -- Civil rights activists are calling for a federal investigation of a California Highway Patrol officer who was caught on cellphone video repeatedly punching 51-year-old Marlene Pinnock.

After a closed door meeting that lasted an hour, Pinnock's attorney, Caree Harper, and Pinnock's daughter, Maisha Allums, stormed out of the hospital and refused to answer any of the media's questions.

Pinnock, seen in a photo courtesy of her attorney above, has been under psychiatric hold at the Los Angeles County's Mental Health Clinic for about nine days. On Thursday, the homeless woman underwent a CAT scan.

"I have seen many, many cases of brutality, but I'll tell you I've never seen this level of brutality against a woman, ever" civil rights attorney John Burris said.

Cellphone video recorded on July 1 along the 10 Freeway at La Brea Avenue shows Pinnock being punched repeatedly by an unidentified CHP officer. The beating has sparked outrage and calls of police brutality.

Community leaders are asking for a federal investigation, and say any CHP investigation would be unacceptable.

"We will not accept an investigation as being the conclusive investigation on this case by the CHP," civil rights activist Danny Bakewell said. "That is tantamount to hiring the fox to guard the chicken coop."

The CHP says the officer was taken off the streets, but activists believe he needs to face criminal charges.

"You don't beat a person into submission on the ground that you are trying to protect them, and there was a callousness about it," Burris said.

The CHP told Eyewitness News they "hadn't heard yet about the family's intentions, but it will not delay or hinder CHP commitment to a timely resolve in the investigation."

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