On Saturday, video was uploaded to Youtube of police officers screaming at and arresting children at a community pool in Texas. One officer, confronted by two boys while grabbing a young girl by the neck and shoving her head towards the ground, pulls his gun and points it at them.
According to a police statement posted to Facebook, McKinney, Texas police responded on Friday evening to a “disturbance” call regarding a group of teenagers who “do not live in the area or have permission to be there.”
A fight had reportedly broken out at the Craig Ranch North Community Pool when the police were called. “When the cops showed up everyone ran, including the people who didn’t do anything,” the description of the Youtube video reads. “So the cops just started putting everyone on the ground and in handcuffs for no reason. This kind of force is uncalled for especially on children and innocent bystanders.”
From the police statement:
First responding officers encountered a large crowd that refused to comply with police commands. Nine additional units responded to the scene. Officers were eventually able to gain control of the situation.
McKinney Police later learned of a video that was taken at the scene by an unknown party. This video has raised concerns that are being investigated by the McKinney Police Department. At this time, one of the responding officers has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of this investigation.
The statement does not specify which of the responding officers has been suspended or which part of the video “raised concerns.” Was it, indeed, the part where an officer pulls his weapon on two unarmed boys? Or was it the part where he drives his knee into a teenage girl’s back—a girl who, in fact, was apparently following his orders to leave the area when he changed his mind and decided to arrest her—and screams in her face?
Then again, perhaps it was the part when he interrupts another officer who is trying to talk to a group of teenagers—two of whom return to him a flashlight dropped by an officer who was sprinting around tackling people—like human beings, wrestling one to the ground and yelling, “Get on the ground. I told you to stay.”
Later, this officer explains, “I personally told you to get on the ground and stay. What did you do when I walked away? You did what everybody else did, and what everybody else did was illegal. You did it, and you got caught. Now, you’re sitting here, paying for it.”
Update, 2:05 p.m. – Buzzfeed News spoke to Brandon Brooks, who uploaded the video to Youtube. “I think a bunch of white parents were angry that a bunch of black kids who don’t live in the neighborhood were in the pool,” he said. “Everyone who was getting put on the ground was black, Mexican, Arabic,” he said. “[The cop] didn’t even look at me. It was kind of like I was invisible.” Brooks is white.
Update, 6:33 p.m. - The suspended officer has reportedly been identified as Corporal Eric Casebolt.
Image via YouTube. Contact the author of this post: firstname.lastname@example.org.