The following video is from KOMO News in Seattle.
So what started all this? Well the officer was citing them for jaywalking. Yup – the extremely horrible crime of crossing a street where you shouldn’t. It looks like the officers superiors have a “number of concerns” over what happened also:
Seattle police officials said Tuesday that their officers are trained to throw a punch in certain situations, but said they have a “number of concerns” regarding the tactics an officer used in dealing with a 17-year-old girl he punched in the face while trying to cite a group of women for jaywalking.
“The issue we have to investigate is whether the force he used is reasonable given the combative resistance he was facing… and we’re not going to pass judgment on that until the matter has been thoroughly investigated,” said Assistant Seattle Police Chief Nick Metz.
To me both parties are at fault here. The officer should have used more restraint and had backup there. The girls should have listened to law enforcement, but I am going to give them some wiggle room here.
We have too many incidents of police violence in this country and a big requirement for being a police officer is having the trust of the public. That’s something that is really amiss in today’s America, and rightfully so. Add to that the very minor infraction that they were being cited for, jaywalking, and I’m sure that they felt this had to do with race. Who wouldn’t?
At least the Seattle Police Department appears to be taking a very serious look into this incident. Thankfully there is video showing the whole thing, and that could actually help the officer in this case. Imagine if the laws were passed making it a crime to videotape police action? This officer would end up with his word against about a dozen other people who were standing there.