Police officer under fire for tasering 11-year-old girl for shoplifting ‘This is why there aren’t any grocery stores in the Black community’

A Cincinnati policeman is facing disciplinary action after the use of a taser on a young girl and making a disparaging racial remark to her

 

A community in Cincinnati is in an uproar after a local officer tased an 11-year-old girl who was thought to be shoplifting from a grocery store.

Tuesday, officials released bodycam video of an officer telling the girl, after he used a taser on her for allegedly shoplifting, that “You know, sweetheart, this is why there aren’t any grocery stores in the Black community.” Both the child and the officer are African-American.

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According to the Cincinnati Police Department, the incident happened on Aug. 6 while Officer Kevin Brown, 55, was working “an outside employment extension of police services detail” at a Kroger grocery store.

A review posted by ABC affiliate WCPO states Brown witnessed three girls attempting to shoplift items, and as all three tried to leave the store, he repeatedly asked them to stop. When they refused his commands, Brown deployed the taser at one of the girls.

Officer Brown didn’t turn on his bodycam video until after he tased the child. At which point he then placed her in handcuffs and escorted her to the back of the store.

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“The last thing I want to do is tase you like that,” Brown can be heard telling the girl in the video. “That hurt my heart to do that to you. Then I got to listen to all these idiots out here in the parking lot tell me how I was wrong for tasing you.”

While searching her backpack he found “clothing, and consumable goods which included food and beverage” which was worth just over $53. The items included “candy and beef jerky, as well as infant clothing,” and the backpack itself also belonged to the Kroger’s, the review stated.

The 11-year-old confessed that she “took a backpack but the two other juveniles placed items in the bag.”

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According to ABC News, “The use of force review of the incident found that Brown violated several department rules including using a TASER without giving a verbal warning he was about to do so, using a TASER when not reasonably necessary and expressing prejudice concerning race.”

Brown knew the girl “did not appear to be a threat to himself or others,” the review stated. And “was referencing the closing of a number of Kroger stores in black communities, which he believed resulted from large amounts of theft losses.”

The officer has been placed on restricted duty pending the outcome of the investigation and will face a pre-disciplinary hearing, according to police.

“I think the officer was trying to express to this juvenile suspect that there are consequences, not only to herself, but to others when you don’t respect the property rights of another,” said Cincinnati Police Union President Dan Hils in a statement to the Cincinnati Enquirer.

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