The head of the Cleveland Police Patrolman's Union, Steve Loomis, described the apology from Jason Ruiz as insincere.
Ruiz read a brief apology in court. Municipal Judge Kathleen Keough said a plea deal would only be approved if Ruiz apologized to Officer Anthony Sauto.
Officer Sauto said he accepts the apology, but was critical of black leaders who presumed falsely that he was in the wrong.
Following the hearing, Johnson said he had no problem with the apology, but felt police should have apologized too.
Loomis called Johnson "a joke" and a councilman with "no credibility." Johnson responded, accusing Loomis of using the incident "as propaganda."
"Good job of grandstanding, Jeff," Loomis said. "You're bullies," Johnson snapped back.
Ruiz was arrested on charges of disorderly conduct and criminal trespass in August after he scuffled with Officer Sauto, who provided security for the Velvet Dog nightclub on W. 6th.
The NAACP and other black leaders, including Councilman Johnson, expressed outrage with the arest and said it was racially motivated.
Security tape released later showed a different story and prompted police to demand that Ruiz apologize.
Ruiz entered a first time offenders program and was placed on probation.