The Phoenix mayor and police chief were so repulsed and “sickened” by the video showing the police pointing a gun at the parents of a 4-year-old child that they apologized to the family and demanded an immediate town meeting to address this issue.
Recorded cellphone video shows the officers pointing their guns because the child took a 99-cent doll from a Family Dollar store. The cops profanely told the parents, Dravon Ames and his fiancé Iesha Harper, that they were going to “put a cap” in the parents as well as “you are going to get f——- shot.”
The parents explained to CNN that they didn’t know the child had the doll. But the store employee tipped off the police, who followed the family to an apartment complex and surrounded them, according to the The Daily Beast.
Mayor Kate Gallego vowed that the city would speed up the rollout of body-worn cameras so that the entire force has them by August 2019.
“There is no situation in which this behavior is ever close to acceptable,” Gallego said on a Twitter post. “As a mother myself, seeing these children placed in such a terrifying situation is beyond upsetting.”
Jay-Z has ordered one of his lawyers to fly into Phoenix to help the family with their $10M lawsuit against the city and the police department. The lawyer, Thomas Horne, who is already representing the victimized family, accused the officers of battery, unlawful imprisonment, false arrest, infliction of emotional distress and violation of the family’s civil rights, according to the New York Daily News.
The mayor ordered a community meeting on Tuesday evening demanding that Police Chief Jeri Williams be in attendance.
Williams, a Black woman, said in a Facebook post that she was “disturbed by the language and the actions” of the officers.
Meanwhile, the mayor, vows to get answers on this episode that’s become a national scandal.
“I recognize that to get to the bottom of this issue and implement meaningful change, we are going to have some uncomfortable and painful conversations,” the mayor tweeted.
In the interim, the responding police officers who terrorized the family have been relegated to desk duty.