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Man in viral police arrest video appears in court

Posted at 7:17 PM, May 09, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-09 22:35:10-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV)— The man in the center of a viral video depicting a police arrest appeared in San Diego County Superior Court Tuesday. But he was there for another case, dating back to 2017.

20-year-old Trenelle Cannon spoke at one of his many court appearances scheduled for this week. This one was regarding a robbery from 2017, where prosecutors said Cannon snatched a $1,000 gold chain off a person's neck.

"The defendant was seen running to a vehicle, and that vehicle took off. There was a police hot stop on it. The defendant ran from the passenger and left the necklace inside," Deputy District Attorney, George Modlin said.

But Cannon made headlines because of a controversial video, released Wednesday. The 12-second video was recorded from the back of a sedan that Cannon was riding with four others. Police said despite a demand to stop, the driver sped off onto Interstate 5. Near the freeway exit, police conducted a traffic stop. That's where the video begins.

Cannon's girlfriend Shakira Smith, who took the video, said the man on the other end of the officers' punches, is Cannon.

But San Diego Police said the 12-second video does not show the whole story, of how the 20-year-old had multiple outstanding warrants.

According to San Diego Police Chief David Nisleit, officers were surveilling Cannon before the incident. When he took off, Chief Nislet said officers chased him. When they got close, he noted Cannon resisted, which resulted in the necessary force, which he called "physical strikes and distraction strikes."

"Cannon refused to cooperate and struggled to keep his hands in front of his body." Chief Nisleit said.

Cannon's loved ones said that was police brutality.

"He is quickly pulled out of the vehicle by his shirt, head first, throwing him down to the ground aggressively," girlfriend Shakira Smith said.

In his short adult life, Cannon has been the defendant for at least three other criminal cases: involving a stolen cell phone, a gold chain, firearms possession, and identity theft. While he awaits the arraignments for his new charges, he requested a change in his living situation.

"I just wanted to request that I be taken out of the psych ward or whatever," Cannon said. "But they put me in like, a psych ward facility on the 6th floor, and I would request that I go to mainline. I've seen the psychiatrist and she said there is nothing wrong with me at all, and she doesn't understand why I'm up there."

Cannon's arraignment for the charges from the video will be tomorrow at 1:30 pm.