Superior woman alleges police assault outside bar (with video)A Superior woman is claiming police assaulted her after a fight outside a downtown bar earlier this month.
By: Barbara Reyelts, Northland's NewsCenter
A Superior woman is claiming police assaulted her after a fight outside a downtown bar earlier this month.
Superior police were called to the Keyport Lounge twice Jan. 5 after the Green Bay Packers lost to the San Francisco 49ers in an NFL playoff game. The second of the two incidents took place in the parking lot, where police reports say two men were handcuffed and put into squad cars.
After the arrests, Natasha Lancour got into a verbal altercation with an officer who responded to the fight.
Police cameras caught a portion of the incident on tape, which was provided to the Northland’s NewsCenter.
The video shows that Superior police officer George Gothner gets close to Lancour and drags her to the hood of his squad car, where he slams her down. He then punches her in the face with a closed fist.
In Gothner’s report, he writes:
“Suddenly Lancour reached up with her left hand and struck and scratched me across the right side of my face … My reaction was that I gave her a closed-fist punch to the left side of her face …”
Lancour’s lawyer, Richard Gondik, said he believes the video shows a dramatic, excessive use of force.
“She is 5-foot-nothing. She has never been arrested before; she has young children,” Gondik said. He also said Lancour had not been drinking that evening.
The altercation between the officer and Lancour moved out of the range of the squad car camera, but Gondik said the results of the “assault,” as he calls it, were apparent on Lancour’s face.
“She has marks on her face, swelling of the cheeks, as well as a cut between her lip and her chin," he said. "As you can see, the officer punches her with an uppercut right, knocking her down and off camera.”
Lancour’s hand can be seen reaching up toward Gothner’s face. He claims she scratched him, and that’s why he responded as he did.
Superior police attorney Gregg Gunta said his office has analyzed the video tape and feels this is a highly defensible case.
Police Chief Charles Lagesse said the department also has looked closely at the tape and would like to find whoever captured the video on their cellphones to see if they show more of what happened.
Lagesse is asking those people to come forward.
“When the public views the video and the photos that your station will show, if they have any information on who these individuals are, they should call our department,” Lagesse told the Northland’s NewsCenter.
Gondik said he would like to see the cellphone videos to see what happened after Lancour was moved out of the range of the police camera. He said he believes the alleged assault on Lancour continued.
“The beat-down continued off camera on the passenger side of the squad,” he said.
Lagesse stressed that whoever took the videos are not in any trouble.
In the video, Lancour said she believed she was treated in such a manner because of her race.
“You did that (expletive) because I was black,” Lancour can be heard saying in the squad car.
Lancour is scheduled to be in court Jan. 31 on charges of assaulting an officer and resisting arrest.
Anyone with video of the incident, or anyone who knows someone who does, is urged to contact the Superior Police Department at (715) 395-7490 or attorney Richard Gondik’s office at (715) 395-3180.