Colombia's defense minister apologized on Friday on behalf of the national police for an incident of police brutality that sparked two nights of protests that rocked parts of capital Bogota and satellite city Soacha, leaving 11 dead and hundreds injured.
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Demonstrators have taken to the streets for consecutive nights to protest the death on Wednesday of Javier Ordonez, 46. A widely-shared video filmed by Ordonez's friend showed the father of two being repeatedly shocked with a stun gun by police. He died later in a hospital.
"The national police apologize for any violation of the law or ignorance of regulations by any members of the institution", Defense Minister Carlos Holmes Trujillo said in a video message.
The video of Ordonez shows him pinned to the ground by police officers and subjected to successive electric shocks early on Wednesday as he begs, "please, no more."
Police said Ordonez was found drinking alcohol in the street with friends in violation of coronavirus distancing rules. He was taken to a police station in western Bogota which has become a focal point of protests, and later died in hospital.
Two police officers implicated in Ordonez's death face charges of abusing authority and homicide. They have already been suspended and will be fired from the force.
A further five officers have been suspended in connection with Ordonez's death, Trujillo said.
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