Officer tells court he didn't intend to hurt Indigenous man he kneed in back

The screams of a man in terrible pain echoed through an Edmonton courtroom Wednesday as a Crown prosecutor played a bystander's cellphone video of the violent arrest of an Indigenous man.

The video shows Const. Michael Partington striding to where another officer is holding Elliot McLeod on the ground — face down, quiet, hands behind his back.

Without warning, Partington abruptly drops, the weight of his body driving his knee between McLeod's shoulder blades. McLeod screams and begs for it to stop.

After the video ended, Partington denied the Crown prosecutor's suggestion that he'd intended to hurt McLeod and insisted he never realized he had caused McLeod pain.

"I did not think that what I had done could possibly hurt him," Partington testified on the third day of his assault trial before Provincial Court Judge Peter Ayotte.


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