A Detroit police officer has sparked outrage after posting an insensitive Snapchat video of a Black woman freezing in the cold during a traffic stop.
According to the Huffington Post, Tuesday, officials from Detroit Police Department confirmed that Officer Gary Steele had been reassigned while they investigate the video. The clip in question was taken after Steel pulled over Ariel Moore for having an expired registration and seized her vehicle.
Detroit station WXYZ reports that once Moore was told to exit the vehicle so it could be towed, she was offered a ride to her home but declined. The 23-year-old instead chose to walk a block home in below-freezing weather. That’s when the officer decided to poke fun at her plight and start filming her.
In Steele’s video the young woman can be seen walking away as one of the officers mocks her and says she is doing the “walk of shame.” Making the ill advised video even worse is the fact that stickers were added to the footage that read, “What black girl magic looks like” and “celebrating Black History Month.”
The racially charged clip ends with an officer saying, “Bye, Felicia,”
When the local news station showed Moore and her mother, Monique Mobley the video they were stunned.
“I’ve never had this happen to me in my life. I’m kind of shocked — I don’t really know how to feel right now. I’m still trying to take it in,” said Moore.
“What they put on there, that’s racist. They’re demeaning my child for no reason,” added Mobley.
Thursday, Detroit Police Chief James Craig told press that he agrees that what those officers did was unacceptable.
“I am angry. I’m angry because this was a racially insensitive post,” Craig told reporters according to the Daily Beast. “On top of that, she’s walking on a very cold night. It’s dark, and, in my view, she’s in harm’s way. It could’ve been my daughter, my sister. It doesn’t matter, it could have been anyone.”
Craig also acknowledges that Steele’s use of “Bye, Felicia” was “derogatory” and that the reference to Black History Month is blatantly “problematic.” As a result, Steele has been placed on restricted duty, pending an internal investigation.