Many Outraged After Video Shows New Jersey Officers Handcuffing Only a Black Teen After He’s Involved in Fight
In the video, two New Jersey Bridgewater Police Department officers are breaking up a fight. One officer sits the Latino teenager down while the other officer handcuffs the Black teen.
Video of two teenagers, one Black, and one who appears to be white, fighting in a mall is causing an uproar.
In the video, two New Jersey Bridgewater Police Department officers are breaking up the fight. One officer sits the one teenager down while the other officer handcuffs the Black teen.
"I just cant understand it, I don't," the Black teen's mom told CNN. "I keep trying to wrap my mind around it, and no possible scenario does it make sense to me."
"I hate to say this. If it wasn't for race, then what is it? What made them tackle my son and not the other kid? What made them be so aggressive with my son and not the other kid? Why does the other kid sitting down looking at my son being humiliated and being put into cuffs."
"It was wrong," Joey, who is Latino, said to WPIX-TV. "And I knew there were going to be problems when they did that because they didn't go for me."
"She said 'stay put.' that's all she said. I didn't understand why."
Many are now calling for the officers to be fired.
"We recognize that this video has made members of our community upset and are calling for an internal affairs investigation," The Bridgewater Police Department said in a statement on Facebook.
"The officers were able to respond quickly to this incident and stop it from escalating because of a tip we received from the community."
"Although an investigation is still gathering the facts about this incident, I'm deeply disturbed by what appears to be racially disparate treatment in this video," New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said on Twitter.
"We're committed to increasing trust between law enforcement and the people they serve."
The NAACP also weighed in to highlight the differences in how the two boys were treated.
"When Bridgewater police found two youths fighting, the immediate reaction was to aggressively throw the Black child to the ground, knee placed around the neck area and cuffed behind the back," they stated.
"At the same time, the white [looking] youth, at least equally at fault for the fight as his Black counterpart, was carefully eased onto a couch and treated like a victim."
The Bridgewater Police Department said it's now requesting that the Somerset County Prosecutor's Office assist in its investigation as it follows the New Jersey Attorney General's internal affairs guidelines.
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