Officer Placed on Leave for Pointing Gun at Teens at Pool Party
The always controversial subject of excessive police force bubbled to the surface again this weekend when a police officer in McKinney, Tex., was caught on camera pointing his gun at teens during a pool party.
According to the Dallas Morning News:
Police Cpl. Eric Casebolt was placed on administrative leave after a video surfaced showing him pulling a 15-year-old girl to the ground and pinning her down outside a pool party Friday night in the expansive Craig Ranch subdivision. Seconds later, he pulled his gun and pointed it at two teens who appear to try to come to her aid.
Police were summoned after getting a call about some teens who showed up at the pool without having permission to use it. There had been reports some teens began fighting while there.
Casebolt, who has been with the McKinney Police Department for nearly a decade, threw Dajerria Becton, 15, to the ground. She told KDFW:
He grabbed me, twisted my arm on my back and shoved me in the grass and started pulling the back of my braids. I was telling him to get off me because my back was hurting bad. Him getting fired is not enough."
In the video, Casebolt yells at some kids, "Don’t make me [expletive] run around here with 30 [expletive] pounds of gear on in the sun ’cause you want to screw around out here."
Shortly after that, he pushes a girl, presumably Becton, down, which causes Casebolt to draw his weapon on a group of teenagers and leading him to place Becton in handcuffs.
McKinney Mayor Brian Loughmiller released a statement about the incident:
I am disturbed and concerned by the incident and actions depicted in the video. Our expectation as a City Council is that our police department and other departments will act professionally and with appropriate restraint relative to the situation they are faced with."
The whole incident has some people questioning the if the police targeted blacks. One woman, La’Shadion Anthony, said, “We’re not here to cause a riot or be Baltimore all over again. We’re just here to be treated fairly and equally."
However, another woman, who did not want to be identified, said, "They were just doing the right thing when these kids were fleeing and using profanity and threatening security guards."
What do you think? Were the police using excessive force or did they do what was necessary?