AN INVESTIGATION into the level of force used by a Gwent Police officer during an arrest in Newport has been opened.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), which oversees all police forces in the UK, has today confirmed an investigation has been opened following a referral from Gwent Police last week.

It comes after footage emerged of an arrest in Newport, in which the force used by an officer at the scene was called into review.

The investigation is set to look into whether or not the officer’s use of force was reasonable, proportionate, and necessary.

It has been confirmed that the officer involved has been contacted, and has been made aware of the steps being taken by the IOPC. The incident took place on Friday July 9, after two officers had approached a 41-year-old man in connection with alleged driving offences.

According to the IOPC, it is alleged that the man initially made off, before an officer encountered him in a garden at Livale Court, Bettws.

READ MORE: Watch: Video shows alleged police brutality in Newport

It is alleged that an altercation took place here, with the police constable said to have deployed “incapacitant spray”, before striking the man with a baton, before other officers arrived.

IOPC Operations Manager Melanie Palmer said: “We would like to reassure members of the community that we have taken the decision to independently investigate this incident. Video footage of part of the incident has been released widely through social media.

“We will ensure we look at the full circumstances of the overall interaction Gwent Police officers had with the man in the lead up to and during the arrest.

“We are investigating whether the officer’s use of force was reasonable, proportionate and necessary in the situation that unfolded. We have contacted the man to explain our role and how the investigation will progress.”

In a statement sent to the The National's sister title The South Wales Argus, deputy chief constable Amanda Blakeman of Gwent Police said: "It is important that we allow the IOPC to conduct their investigation in an independent and transparent way. We will work with them and ensure that they have our full co-operation.

"We are unable to comment further at this time due to the ongoing investigation, but we will provide an update when we’re able to do so."

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