11-year-old black twins handcuffed at gunpoint
Late last month, officers handcuffed two 11-year-old twins and their 17-year-old friend at gunpoint, claiming they fit of the description of gun-wielding suspects.
Their mother, Juanita Ligon, has since spoken out and said on Facebook that "this nonsense has to stop." Ligon said her sons were racially profiled, cuffed and had a gun pointed at them.
The Grand Rapids Police Department released footage from the officer's body-cam, which can be viewed below, and is currently investigating the matter.
The department said in an online statement that the three teenagers were "detained and briefly handcuffed" while they were searched for weapons.
An incident in Grand Rapids, Michigan, is re-igniting debate over police treatment of youth. The teen and two children involved are fine, but a mother is angry. NE-020FR pic.twitter.com/je1hNhGj7m— CNN Newsource (@CNNNewsource) September 1, 2018
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They were released a few minutes later when no gun was found but Ligon said the damage was already done. One of the twins could be seen weeping while being cuffed.
The department only released one video, and Ligon is demanding that they release all the footage from the incident. She said, "I want the beginning to the end."
CAUGHT ON CAMERA: A mother is calling for Grand Rapids police officers to be suspended, after newly released bodycam shows officers confronting 11-year-old twin boys and a 17-year-old with guns drawn. @JanaiNorman with the investigation. https://t.co/EBUWaS74am pic.twitter.com/kKjcbIq8hV— World News Tonight (@ABCWorldNews) September 3, 2018
"That is a baby. They had to walk backwards, afraid, with guns pointed toward their heads, get on the ground and be put in cuffs, and in a car. They were treated like animals."
She added that it is not how 11-year-old children should be treated, but the chief of Police said his officers "showed great compassion and humanity."
Chief David Rahinsky could also understand Ligon's outrage. He said that as a parent, that is not a "good enough emotional response to these issues."
The chief said an investigation is underway and that his department will release the video footage and 911 call in due course.
Earlier this month, another 11-year-old from Cincinnati, Ohio, was handcuffed when an off-duty officer claimed she had stolen goods in her backpack.
The officer claimed that the woman was wielding a knife, but it later came to light that she was cutting flowers with it.