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The Atlanta Police Department released body camera footage of a recent arrest of a woman after a short video of the incident gained attention on social media and set off accusations that the officer used excessive force.
“Do you have IDs on you?” an officer is heard asking a man and a woman he spotted in Shady Valley Park after hours last Monday evening. The park is closed to the public at 11 p.m. and the officer was attempting to give the two individuals citations for the ordinance violation due to their presence in the park at about 11:50 p.m., according to police.
The article goes on to state the following:
In the video, the officer instructs both people to sign the tickets or face arrest. The man complies, but the woman is seen asking the officer for his name and badge number and telling him she does not have to sign the ticket.
The officer told the woman “Well, like I explained to him, if you don’t sign it, then you’re going to be physically taken to jail.”
The situation starts to escalate when the woman refused to sign and the officer repeatedly tells her to put her hands behind her back, to which she also refuses.
While the officer continues to try to handcuff the woman, she says, “I’m going to sign the ticket now.”
The officer then tells her it’s too late to sign the ticket and the woman responds with “Why am I being arrested?”
The woman can then be seen on the ground crying while the officer has a taser gun out and is on top of her while still trying to handcuff her.
The officer was identified by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution as Bill Brooks, they did not name the woman or man who violated the city ordinance since they weren’t charged with felonies.
The video footage was soon on social media where it sparked outrage with claims of excessive force by the officer.
An Instagram user claiming to be the arrested woman’s sister posted “Are we not aloud (sic) to ask questions about our rights without ego taking over. Why was a taser pulled out? Why was she frisked by a male officer? Aren’t police here to protect and serve? What kind of training is this? Aggressive officers like this have to be STOPPED!!”
Some other social media users responded with “horrible.”
Then of course the celebrities had to jump in, like American Idol winner Jordin Sparks commenting, “Omfg. I am so sorry. This is horrible. And why is his face covered?”
The Atlanta Police Department said in a statement that it is “Aware of video footage circulating on social media and released the full bodycam footage after a review of the incident made it immediately clear there is more to this story than the short social media video shows. No one wants to see a fight between an officer and a citizen, but a more in-depth review of the incident, using the body worn camera footage, shows the officer repeatedly ask the female to comply by placing her hands behind her back and the footage shows she refuses each time.”
A police department spokesperson said the officer was not disciplined over the incident and “If an officer explains you will be taken to jail for something and you choose to push the officer to that limit, you will end up in jail.”
A prime example of how resisting arrest leads to unnecessary increased force. When the officer gives you instructions, follow them.
Atlanta PD releases bodycam footage after accusations of excessive force in neighborhood trying to leave cityhttps://t.co/S0LviozVCR
— Bernard B. Kerik (@BernardKerik) August 14, 2022
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