Memphis, TN — Two officers with the Memphis city school district were fired after they were caught on video assaulting a pregnant teen. The officers have since filed a lawsuit, claiming the reason they were fired was because they are white.
The incident happened in 2013, when officers Henry Todd and Richard Pinner were caught on school surveillance cameras using obviously unnecessary and excessive force to take down a 17-year-old pregnant student.
The officers claim that they had to attack the young mother-to-be because she was eating a snack and using profanity. They claim she was resisting arrest and had no other choice but to tackle her and slam her to the ground.
While the student involved was issued a juvenile summons for the incident, it is unclear if she faced any charges as cases involving juveniles are not released to the public.
Both Todd and Pinner are now ‘pulling the race card’ and suing Shelby County Schools (which was Memphis City School district at the time of the incident), and their case is going to trial.
According to their lawsuit, had they been black, they would still have their jobs.
“Plaintiffs are members of a protected class consisting of members of the white race,” the complaint states. “The adverse employment actions taken by Memphis City Schools terminating plaintiffs were done so because plaintiffs are white; members of the black race would not have been terminated under the same circumstances.”
The abusive duo claims that black officers receive counseling after the first time they beat up students, rather than get fired. However, they claim they were not afforded the same due process after beating up the pregnant girl.
According to the complaint, Pinner and Todd were working at Northwest Prep Academy on Feb. 1, 2013, when an out-of-control student had to be taken down because of her belligerent behavior.
However, the video simply shows her standing there eating a snack before they approached her.
When reading the lawsuit, it sounds as if these two officers were dealing with a dangerous assassin and not a 17-year-old pregnant high school student.
“Officer Pinner attempted to place handcuffs on the student. The student jerked her arm with only one handcuff on the wrist. The student swung her arm with the partially loose handcuff attached,” the lawsuit states. “Officer Pinner became concerned for his own safety and others from the loose swinging handcuff. He used accepted law enforcement procedures to take the violent and dangerous student to the ground to complete handcuffing. Plaintiffs notified their supervisor and requested assistance from the Memphis City Police.”
According to the complaint, the officers claim Chamella Branch, the school’s black principal at the time, said, “I’m tired of you white officers beating up on my black babies. I’m going to have you fired.”
However, in court on Monday, the former principal testified that wasn’t true.
Regardless of the race of those involved in this situation, the video below clearly shows two large grown men tackling and slamming to the ground a pregnant juvenile who was half their size who presented no danger.