For many Blacks living in large urban areas, the police seem to be an ever-present occupying force. A force that is so deadly that an encounter with some beat cops could not only change your life forever but might end it as well. One such police force is the Baltimore Police Department.
The department gained infamy after the death of Freddie Gray, who died after being given a rough ride in a police van while unrestrained. His death caused outrage not only in Baltimore but across the country as a coroner declared Gray’s death a homicide, perpetrated by the police officers involved. Sadly, all six officers indicted in Gray’s homicide escaped jail time as charges were dropped or the officers acquitted.
Last week a video went viral in social media as once again a member of the Baltimore Police Department was caught brutalizing a member of the public. The video shows Officer Arthur Williams pushing Dashawn McGrier, 26, against a wall and yelling at him. The situation quickly escalated into a brutal and bloody takedown of McGrier by Williams. The encounter happened because McGrier initially protested the request to show identification and refused to accept what is known as a police interaction notification. Williams and McGrier have encountered each other before according to the Baltimore Sun. Back in June 2018, Williams charged McGrier with assaulting an officer, disorderly conduct, obstructing and hindering and resisting arrest. Those charges were still pending at the time of the most recent encounter.
Initially when the public became aware of the video, Williams and his partner were placed on administrative leave as an internal police investigation was launched. Over the weekend, Williams tendered his resignation and the Baltimore Police Department posted the following to its Twitter account:
“The officer involved in yesterday’s incident is no longer with the BPD. Interim Commissioner Tuggle has accepted his resignation. The second officer remains on administrative duties. This remains an active criminal investigation.”
Williams had been with the Baltimore police for a little over a year. Chief Tuggle stated to the media on Saturday, “Officers have a responsibility and duty to control their emotions in the most stressful of situations.”