University of Wisconsin Police Department released body camera footage from Denzel McDonald’s arrest Thursday.

[UPDATED] UWPD arrests student during class over graffiti highlighting racism on campus[UPDATED]: Around noon Thursday, University of Wisconsin Police Department officers removed a student from class to make an arrest in Read…

UWPD spokesperson Marc Lovicott published a post with four separate videos. A fourteen-minute video depicts UWPD officers questioning McDonald after taking him out of class. Two other videos of body camera footage show the officers questioning McDonald while he sits in their squad car and an officer talking to another person at the scene. A fourth external surveillance video on Library Mall filmed the officers walking McDonald to their squad car.

Lovicott wrote in the post that the videos were being released in the  “interest of transparency and public understanding of this incident.”

First and second videos

The first 14-minute video shows University of Wisconsin Police Department officers taking Denzel McDonald out of his classroom from the George L. Mosse Humanities building into a stairwell for questioning.

The footage starts with the police officer walking into the classroom and asking for Denzel McDonald. The footage does not include either of the two police officers saying “[the student] had his chance to get his message out and now it’s our turn,” as witnesses previously alleged.

[UPDATED] UWPD arrests student during class over graffiti highlighting racism on campus[UPDATED]: Around noon Thursday, University of Wisconsin Police Department officers removed a student from class to make an arrest in Read…

In the video, the officer asks McDonald to come into the hallway to talk with him and informs McDonald that he has a body camera on. The officer is heard asking McDonald to take his hands out of his pockets, for the police officers’ safety, as they exit the classroom. 

In the video, the officer with the body camera tells McDonald they have footage of him spray painting messages and signing them as ‘God’ before asking McDonald to give his “side of the story.”

When the officer asked McDonald why he put the graffiti up, he said it was because of “the world” and because of “police officers.” McDonald then explained his motivations further. 

“Police brutality, …. incarceration, enslavement of African people,” McDonald said. “Everything this country was founded on, that’s the problem.”

The officer repeatedly asks if he can have McDonald’s phone to see if he took any pictures of the graffiti with it. McDonald said  he did not have his phone on him. 

The officer also shows him pictures of the graffiti and ask him if all of them were his work. McDonald neither denied nor accepted that he created them. 

“I can’t say I did all of them, I can’t say I didn’t,” McDonald said. 

In the video, the officer mentioned that police questioned McDonald for graffiti last year and asked whether or not the recent incident stemmed from it. McDonald said that was true but that “it’s bigger than this.”

When the officer spoke to McDonald about how much it costs to remove the graffiti and how that money could be used for students, McDonald said the money is not used for students — it’s used to incarcerate people like himself.  

“You know there’s different ways besides damaging property to get your point across, though, right?” the officer said. “‘Cause then you don’t have to talk to us.” 

The footage also shows Johanna Almiron, McDonald’s professor, asking the officers about McDonald’s legal rights. The officer then proceeds to handcuff McDonald. The last thing that is seen in the video is McDonald’s backpack against the camera. According to the release, the camera was inadvertently turned off after McDonald’s backpack bumped into it.

The faces of students in the classroom and McDonald’s personal information, like his phone number and how to get to his house, were redacted in the video. 

The second video is a time-lapse shot of Library Mall, where the officers and McDonald can be seen walking from the Humanities building toward the officers’ squad car opposite the Chazen Museum.

Third video

The third video starts one minute and 48 seconds after the body camera was turned off by the backpack, according to the release. McDonald is in handcuffs at the start of the video. The officers are seen escorting McDonald to their squad car.

Once they reach the squad car, one of the officers takes off McDonald’s handcuffs so that he can take off his backpack. The officers then re-handcuff McDonald, search him for weapons and put him in the back of the squad car. While he is in the back seat, the officer with the body camera searches McDonald’s backpack. 

During the next part of the video, the officer without the body camera is seen on the phone. After the phone call ends, the officer with the body camera opens the back door of the squad car to talk to McDonald. The officer loosens McDonald’s handcuffs, at McDonald’s request, then reads McDonald his Miranda rights. 

McDonald declined to make a statement after the officer read him his rights. The video ends when the officer enters the  squad car. 

Fourth video

In the fourth video, Almiron, and what appears to be other students, are gathered outside by the squad car in Library Mall.  

The officer asks Almiron for McDonald’s phone. The officer opens the back of the squad car door so McDonald can speak with her. After McDonald tells her “it’s cool, trust and believe,” Almiron gives the officers McDonald’s phone. 

Almiron asks the officer if she can ride with McDonald, but the officer does not allow her to. She asks where McDonald is being taken and the officer says he cannot tell her for McDonald’s safety. 

The officer then gets back in the car and says that he got the phone. The final video ends with both officers in the squad car. 

Emily Hamer and Vidushi Saxena contributed reporting to this article.