Multiple intensely disturbing videos of Phoenix police officers pointing guns and threatening to kill a black family that included a four-year-old, a one-year-old baby, and a visibly pregnant woman are blowing up the internet right now as people demand justice for this terrorized family.
According to reports, the family was pulled over due to an anonymous call claiming that the family had shoplifted a doll from the Dollar Store that was priced at 99 cents. Some are reporting that the doll was taken by the four-year-old without her parents’ knowledge, but according to Heavy, police officers failed to recover any doll from the car.
"My hands are up! My hands are up!" 22yo Dravon Ames says as a Phoenix police officer yells to "get your fucking hands up." The same officer later says "You're gonna fucking get shot!"— Meg O'Connor (@megoconnor13) June 12, 2019
Ames says the officers stopped him after his child walked out of a Dollar Store with a doll. pic.twitter.com/Nlkd7IXsyc
Regardless of whether the doll was intentionally stolen, many thousands of people have already expressed their outrage after the videos began to go viral Friday afternoon, saying that the police response was grossly out of scope with the alleged crime and that guns should never be pointed at little children.
The incident occurred on May 29, though the complaint against the police and videos from the incident are just surfacing now. Dravon Ames, the driver, can be seen getting his face slammed against a police cruiser by one officer, then kicked in the legs and punched in the back. While that happens, another officer repeatedly screams at his pregnant fiance, Iesha Harper, while she is still in the vehicle, demanding she open a broken door and put her hands up while she holds her infant child.
Officers can be heard shouting things like “you’re gonna f*****g get shot” and “I’m gonna put a cap right in your f*****g head” in front of the children. The complaint alleges that an officer tried to yank the one-year-old out of the mother’s arms, injuring the infant’s shoulder, and told the mother as she was being cuffed that he could have “shot you in front of your f*****g kids.”
Local politicians and clergy have condemned the police conduct evident in the videos, including Arizona state Senator Martín Quezada.
This is everything that's wrong with #LawEnforcement today. My #LD29 #Maryvale community deserves better than this type of inexcusable and unjustifiable rage and abuse of power from the @phoenixpolice. @PHXDistrict5 @PhxDistrict8 https://t.co/VXj0myV1Qo— Sen. Martín Quezada (@SenQuezada29) June 13, 2019
The names of the officers involved have not been released as the police department “investigates” the disturbing incident. According to the complaint, the four-year-old girl has since been having nightmares and wetting the bed when she hadn’t before.
People across the country are flooding Twitter with outrage over what they see as a clear case of severe police brutality over nothing.
FIRE THEM. These men are too unstable to have this job/guns/any legal authority whatsoever. https://t.co/zQ9Is4x4b7— Jameela Jamil ???? (@jameelajamil) June 14, 2019
#PhoenixPD De-escalation Training Exam:— Anne of Beeves (@calypsoh13) June 14, 2019
Question 1: A pregnant black woman refused to hold up her hands because she is holding a two-year old. Who do you shoot first, the woman, the toddler or the fetus?
#PhoenixPD Cops wonder why they are shot at, not respected, & seen as public enemy #1.— Devin Nunes Welfare Farm (@DJTsbuttsniffer) June 14, 2019
HINT: It’s because of events like this.
It’s because cops that violate their oath are not fired and removed from ever serving again.
It’s because they don’t have or use the training given
Important thing to take away from the power tripping #PhoenixPD cop is why cops are so universally hated among minorities. He passed every exam and cleared every mental health check. He was cleared to work, and therefore that is the bar to meet, and that bar is white supremacy— Cuddle Cryptid ???????? (@CuddleCryptid) June 14, 2019
@phoenixpolice your silence in the wake of the #PhoenixPD video is pathetic. You're condoning actions like this. You're supposed to protect and serve. Not profile and demean. The fact that you care more about protecting the officers in this video than the citizens says everything— Bodi (@ThisIsBodi) June 14, 2019
Pointing guns, kicking & screaming, “Get your f*cking hands up!” at a pregnant mom who cannot put her hands up bc she’s holding her baby that can’t walk.— Dawn Young-McDaniel ♿️ (@justdawn_) June 14, 2019
These cops need to “Turn their f*cking badges in!”
The look on her toddler’s face shows how terrifying this was!????#PhoenixPD pic.twitter.com/PX16O71xKZ
Beyond disgusting!! I am outraged and you should be too. #PhoenixPD, this should be a real quick investigation and result in some fired officers. We need honorable, compassionate, level-headed police serving the people. These guys are not it. https://t.co/MEmk88FkhR— Pri (@_PriMurphy_) June 14, 2019
Hey #PhoenixPD, how long will it take for you to investigate a clear case of abuse of power and racial discrimination? Captured by multiple people from multiple angles. Those officers involved should already be relieved of their duties, permanently. https://t.co/mz2CsimtAx— Edward Havens (@EdwardAHavens) June 14, 2019
#PhoenixPD Is it standard procedure to draw a gun when a person has been accused of stealing a 99 cent toy? Racism aside, there is something deeply wrong with a police department that meets theft with the threat of lethal force.— Ambassador_Kong (@Ambassador_Kong) June 14, 2019
It’s not just one cop. It’s multiple cops. Listening to this mother wailing that she can’t put her hands up because she is holding her baby is heartbreaking. #phoenixpd has some explaining to do, some employees and leadership to fire and some apologies to make. I hope they sue. https://t.co/aV8Rc0pxpU— Caitlin (@Caitlin_MWA) June 14, 2019
The rage I feel right now truly cannot be measured. I have such anxiety watching this & hearing the fear in this family’s voice. These pieces of shit belong under the jail. @phoenixpolice we need answers NOW. #PhoenixPD #BlackLivesMatter https://t.co/QHIS8Ckzdi— Frank Martinelli (@FPMartinelli27) June 14, 2019
How many violations of @phoenixpolice policy can you spot in this terrifying vid of police brutality and aggression @MayorGallego? Anyone? What threat required this violent response by the cops? Were #CivilRights violated?— NATHAN LANG (@NATHANLANGFILMS) June 14, 2019
Please take swift action @CityofPhoenixAZ.#PhoenixPD https://t.co/vIdPh9fTdr
Instead of trying to restore trust in the community, #PhoenixPD chose to threaten a pregnant mother with kids over 99 fucking cents. Wish I was there so I could of thrown a dollar at you guys to save this family from trauma. https://t.co/3e2DHYFQVu— #DJ’sMuva ???? (@_Binky2115) June 14, 2019
This #phoenixpd video has me so upset. I've watched it like 5 times and can't stop crying. That poor mama and her babies. That shit is violently criminal. The woman who went to get those kids is a hero.— Kristi Pahr (@KristiPahr) June 14, 2019
#PhoenixPD what’s going on here?! Do you not train your officers to do more than just draw weapons?! You train them in yelling profanity as loud as they can around children? To point weapons at babies?? Take responsibility for your dept’s shortcomings and fix it...NOW! #shame https://t.co/ezZi5wuu7J— lightvsdark21 ????️???? (@chrisl18rel) June 14, 2019
I’ve covered police brutality for years yet videos still manage to shock me. These cops tell a pregnant woman “you’re going to get shot” after she doesn’t put her hands up bc she is HOLDING HER CHILD.— Anya Parampil (@anyaparampil) June 14, 2019
This video captures the reality of US police. They’re acting like terrorists. https://t.co/colUJ4RWp7
Aaaand....another angle of these #PhoenixPD officers absolutely abusing their power and using excessive force...over a $0.99 Barbie doll.— Aria Love Jackson (@AriaLoveJackson) June 14, 2019
This outrage is exhausting. I'm so tired. https://t.co/e4zfaAF7RS
These #PhoenixPD cops are out of control. None of them should be on any police force. They almost Murdered this woman over a damn dollar doll that the mom probably didn't even know the child had. They all need to be Fired. #PhoenixPD are Murderers Hiding Behind Badges! https://t.co/rCWVbbyLdm— VirgoddessG???? (@VirgoddessG) June 14, 2019
Phoenix Police Chief Jeri Williams is calling for an investigation into this incident by the Professional Standards Bureau.