ONLY ON FOX6: Sheboygan man files formal complaint against police

SHEBOYGAN (WITI) -- A Sheboygan man has filed a formal complaint against a Sheboygan police officer -- claiming the officer sucker punched him from behind.

It all started after a man claimed his upstairs neighbor's dog was barking all day. The two ended up exchanging words -- and then someone called police.

A 37-year-old man is now claiming an officer assaulted him, and arrested him on the spot -- though he had done nothing wrong.

Angelo Merritt claims his neighbor threatened him with physical harm, but says the incident escalated when a Sheboygan police officer arrived.

"Next thing I know, I turn to put my shoes on, he grabbed me by the arm and punched me in the head," Merritt said.

Merritt claims the officer punched him in the back of the head on Tuesday, April 23rd outside his home.

The next day, Merritt filed a formal complaint with Sheboygan police. The department refused an on-camera interview with FOX6 News, but says the preliminary investigation shows its officer was appropriate with the use of force against Merritt, who was arrested for disorderly conduct, obstructing an officer and resisting arrest -- stemming from the argument with his neighbor.

"He never told me I was under arrest. He was by himself. He never called for backup," Merritt said.

Merritt's upstairs neighbor who was involved in the dispute also did not want to speak on camera. However, he says Merritt is overreacting and instigated the entire fight. He admits he had a knife on his belt, but never took it out. He claims it was Merritt who put his hands on the officer first.

That neighbor and his wife were also arrested Tuesday night.

"I didn't do anything. I didn't cause any threat to him. I don't understand why he hit me. I just want to know why did you hit me?" Merritt said.

Meanwhile, Merritt is waiting to hear back from Sheboygan police.

The Sheboygan Police Department released the following statement on the incident Wednesday evening:

"At this time, the Sheboygan Police Department has not received any complaints or direct allegations of any police misconduct. A preliminary review of the incident reports related to this investigation indicate that the level of force used by the officers to overcome the resistance of the person arrested was appropriate, and within training and department policy. Any future information will be released as it develops."