Houma Police have launched a criminal investigation after an officer was struck by a bucket of water while responding to a call Sunday night.

A video recorded by a bystander shows an unidentified Houma Police officer getting splashed with water while investigating a disturbance in the Mechanicville area.

The incident occurred around 9 p.m. on Norman Street, police said.

The video shows a crowd of pedestrians gathered around the officer and at least two individuals dousing him with water as he begins to walk away.

Several bystanders laugh as a bucket of water is then hurled toward the officer’s back.

Houma Police Chief Dana Coleman said the incident is no laughing matter.

The suspect or suspects who tossed the bucket could now be facing a battery charge, he said.

“Last night one of our officers responded to a disturbance where several people were blocking the road in the Mechanicville area,” Coleman said. “As you can see in the video someone initially wet him with water. He was walking away and another person wet him with water. And then as he was walking away someone threw a bucket of water at him and hit him with it. We understand people try to have fun and games, but when you start committing batteries on law enforcement, we can’t tolerate it.”

Coleman declined to release the officer’s name but said he wasn’t injured. The video was posted to social media Sunday night.

The police chief praised his officer for showing restraint and keeping calm during the incident.

“It appeared that when the officer was wet with water he took it in stride,” Coleman said. “He could have responded, but he walked away. But as he was walking away someone threw a bucket of water that could have struck him on the back of the head. It could have caused some serious injury to the officer. I commend him highly for showing restraint. But that doesn’t make it right. Those types of antics can only carry on so far.”

Police are in the process of identifying the parties involved and criminal charges will follow, Coleman said.

“Any assistance from the public will be greatly appreciated so we can resolve this,” Coleman said.

Authorities are asking anyone who has information about the investigation to call Houma Police at 873-6371 or submit an anonymous Crime Stoppers tip at 1-800-743-7433 or online at www.crimestoppersbr.org. 

Tips can also be submitted with the P3 Tips mobile application. Some tips can become eligible for a $1,000 reward.