Video shows officer strike Miami football player during arrest; Oxford police investigate

Oxford police are have opened a use of force investigation after a video on social media shows an officer striking a 20-year-old during an arrest, Oxford police said.

A video circulating on TikTok shows an Oxford police officer striking Devin Johnson, who is a Miami University student, who was being held by Brick Street Bar staff while the officer tried to make an arrest around 1:30 a.m. Nov. 18.

The video was posted by someone who claims to be a relative of Johnson, who is on Miami University’s football team.

The department said when they originally reviewed the November incident, they didn’t have that camera angle. They now have opened a use of force investigation, and officer Mathew Blauvelt has been placed on administrative leave.

“We understand that this video is troubling for many to watch and has caused concern in our community,” police said in a statement.

The video does not show what led to the incident, but according to court documents, police say Johnson “entered Brick Street through a side access against the wishes of bar staff” and then was confronted by the bar manager.

Johnson then allegedly “refused to leave” and “assaulted bar staff.”

Police said it then led to a fight outside the bar with bar staff, which is where the TikTok video begins.

Brick Street declined to comment on the matter.

After he was arrested, Johnson was charged with assault, resisting arrest, criminal trespassing and underage possession of alcohol. Johnson is scheduled to be in court on Jan. 25.

Johnson’s lawyer had not responded to a request for comment.

Miami University also issued a statement saying the university was in touch with Johnson “to offer support.”

Johnson is a defensive back from the Cleveland suburb of Berea. He is in his second year at Miami after he was red-shirted for the 2022 football season, according to the team roster.

Credit: Miami University

Credit: Miami University

Oxford Mayor William Snavely said he was made aware of the incident on Facebook.

“I want people to understand that city council and the city administration take this very seriously,” Snavely said. “It’s not at all being covered up by us right now. We’re trying to be as transparent and prompt and fair as we can be.”

Snavely said police conduct likely will come up at their next council meeting on Jan. 16.

Police are asking anyone with additional footage of the arrest or those who were present at the time to contact the department via email at

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