A couple from Arizona sues the city of Phoenix and its police department for $ 10 million after capturing video footage of agents filming their weapons and threatening to shoot the family of four.
On May 29, Dravon Ames and her fiancée, Iesha Harper, went with their two children, London (1) and Island (4).
Unbeknownst to them, their 4-year-old took a doll to a family-friendly discount store that they had just visited, according to a notice of claim dated Wednesday, filed by the former Attorney General's office. Arizona, Thomas Horne, who represents Ames and Harper.
A police patrol followed the couple's car and, once the family entered the babysitter's apartment, a policeman approached the vehicle with his unsheathed weapon and opened the door to the screen. , depending on the case.
Despite the department's rules requiring police to carry surveillance cameras, the Phoenix officers did not wear them, the complaint added. But passersby recorded the meeting in a video published this week.
"I'm going to set a course on your a–," said a police officer in Ames. A second policeman, whose weapon was also fired and pointed at Ames, approached the car, according to the video. "I'm going to shoot you in the mouth."
Horne wrote that the two statements were made in front of the couple's children, who were at the back of the vehicle.
The first officer took Ames, 22, out of the car, pushed his head into the sidewalk, handcuffed him and shouted that Ames would do better to follow the orders, according to the request. The officer threw Ames against the car, ordered him to spread his legs and "kicked him in the right leg so hard that the father collapsed". Then the officer dragged him up and punched him in the back.
Once Ames was handcuffed and inside the patrol car, the officers refocused their attention on Harper and the kids, according to the claim.
According to the claim, the two officers pointed their guns at Harper, a visibly 24-year-old pregnant woman, and her children.
"The first officer grabbed the mother and baby by the neck and tried to take it from the mother's hand," he said. "He asked her to put the baby on the floor, which she did not want to do because the baby could not walk, and the floor was made of hot pavement."
The officer tried to snatch Harper's baby from him, the complaint said. Eventually, he threw Harper first on the face of the police car, then handcuffed him.
"I could have shot you in front of your kids," he said, according to the complaint.
Since May 29, the 4-year-old has nightmares and wets the bed, and Ames, whose car has been impounded, drinks and has no means of transportation to work, said the incident.
Neither Ames nor Harper were arrested or convicted, although they were arrested by police, the Phoenix New Times reported.
The act of assertion alleged that the police had "committed battery, illegal imprisonment, false arrest, emotional distress and a violation of civil rights under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments". the Constitution of the United States.
Horne told the Washington Post that the city had 60 days to respond before filing a complaint.
The police department in Phoenix did not return the newspaper's request for comment, but according to the Phoenix New Times, the police told ABC15 that "the police officer who cursed, threatened and abused Ames is in" non-enforcement " . "
In 2018, Maricopa County, which includes Phoenix, was involved in a record number of shootings involving police, a number nearly double that of 2017, according to the Arizona Republic. The Phoenix officers were responsible for more than half of them.
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