Man Pepper-Sprayed by Police on Board D.C. Bus

A man caught riding a D.C. bus without paying was pepper-sprayed by undercover officers after he attacked police, Metro Transit Police say.

A man boarded a 39 bus near 14th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue SE Wednesday night and two plainclothes officers saw he entered without paying, according to Metro spokesman Dan Stessel.

In an incident caught on video by a rider, the officers approached the man and identified themselves as officers, and then the man put his hands on one officer and became combative, Stessel said.

The officers asked passengers to exit the bus so they could arrest the man, and then used pepper spray on him as he continued to fight. The officers received abrasions from the struggle. The suspect was charged with fare evasion and assault on officers, the Metro spokesman said.

Metro wrote about 4,500 tickets for fare evasion in 2014. Many more riders are given only a warning, Stessel said.

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