KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Former Kansas City Police Department Sergeant Pete Edlund watched the cell phone video of the struggle between Officer Don Hubbard and off-duty firefighter Anthony Bruno, which ultimately ended in Bruno’s death.
"One of the misconceptions that the public has is that they see officers being very aggressive. That's because the officers know that they have to get the upper hand quickly, right away. If that means slamming someone to the ground, you slam them to the ground," Edlund said.
According to Edlund, Bruno had the advantage in the struggle because he appeared to be bigger than the officer. He said the difference in size was most likely what wore the officer out, making it difficult to defend himself.
"When you're fighting a big guy and he's really fighting, that when it gets tough," Edlund said.
He said Hubbard did almost everything a police officer is taught in a situation like the one he found himself in with Bruno.
"The officer did his very best to get that guy in custody. You gotta do what you gotta do," he said.
At the point in the video when Hubbard’s knee hit Bruno’s head, Edlund said he was trying to put Bruno’s head between his legs but he missed. Edlund did not interpret it as an intentional blow to the head.
"He was just trying to get him down so that he could get leverage," Edlund said.
A woman who witnessed the brawl tried to help Hubbard and perform CPR on Bruno. She told detectives she though Hubbard had no other choice but to shoot Bruno.