Institutional Racism Shows Its Ugly Face Again: Cops Pepper-Spray Girl

Hagerstown cops don't think it is racist to assault a 15-year-old Black girl over a traffic accident.

Is the wildfire of systemic racism burning again? An unidentified young girl was pepper-sprayed by Hagerstown police officers in an attempt to place her under arrest.

The Hagerstown Police Department Officers responded to a report of a traffic accident on Sunday afternoon, where the young Black girl allegedly crashed into a car with her bicycle. The officers stated that the girl “had to be detained” and they went on to use pepper-spray after she proved “assaultive” during the arrest.

The attorney representing the girl and her family, Robin Ficker said the girl was hit by a car while she was out riding her bicycle on Sunday. She hit her head as a result of the collision and passed out for 30 seconds. An ambulance was called, but the girl told the paramedics that she felt okay and didn’t need their medical help before the officers showed up.

In a Facebook post, Ficker uploaded a video of the incident and said the girl wanted to go away from the scene after she hopped on her bike and tried to ride away. But she was dragged off the bike by the officers; her hands were pulled above her head and she was slammed against a wall.

The body cam footage shows the teen trying to ride away from the officers before she was subdued, handcuffed and literally carried into the back of the police squad car. The teen refused to put her legs in the car as she cried out for the opportunity to speak to her mother.

One of the officers then said: “Put your feet in or you’re getting sprayed.”  A few moments later, the teen was pepper-sprayed through the window of the squad car. She cried out loudly that she couldn’t breathe and another officer proceeded to shut the squad-car door.

Hagerstown Police Chief Victor Brito said the officers “applied their training and responded within the guidelines of the Hagerstown Police Department.”

“Sometimes the actions that we take aren’t pretty. Sometimes they can look a little ugly, but they follow the policy, pattern and procedure for the Hagerstown Police Department,” he added.

The girl was arrested and later released to a parent. She was charged with two counts of second-degree assault, possession of marijuana, failure to comply with a traffic device and disorderly conduct.

Once again we have to tell a sad story of the officers who went overboard in their treatment of a Black teen. Of course, later they would claim that this tiny girl was a threat to well-trained men in uniform. Do cops treat their own children with so much force? I bet not.

Source: The Root
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