Grand Rapids, MI — A mother is outraged and her 11-year-old daughter left horrified after police arrested the little girl as she walked out of her home to go to the store.
Witney Hodges is the mother of 11-year-old Honestie, who says her daughter was walking out of her back door last Wednesday when she was met by a swarm of Grand Rapids police officers.
According to Hodges, officers treated Honestie like a criminal. They told her to turn around, with guns drawn, according to FOX 8, and walk backward toward them.
“The whole time they are telling her to come down, I’m telling them, ‘She’s 11 years old, that’s my daughter. Don’t cuff her.'”
Honestie was then handcuffed and thrown in the back of the cruiser. She is an 11-year-old girl who had done nothing wrong and all of the sudden she finds herself handcuffed and detained by police.
Confirming that they indeed handcuffed her, Grand Rapids police admitted this week that it happened.
“When my mom was walking past I was putting my hands through the little bars, banging on the windows screaming, ‘Please don’t let them take me.'”
According to police, they went to Honestie’s home that day to look for her aunt, Carrie Manning, who was wanted by police for allegedly stabbing her younger sister.
The only problem with this excuse is that Honestie is an 11-year-old black girl and Manning is a 40-year-old white woman.
“They had police cars over on this street, they had police cars all along the alley,” Honestie said.
According to WOOD TV, in a Monday night release, GRPD said officers detained the women and Honestie because it had not yet been determined that none of them were the suspect and that they weren’t armed.
Apparently, they couldn’t tell the difference between a little black girl and a grown-up white woman.
Officers got permission to search the house. GRPD said the suspect wasn’t there, but she was later found at another home and arrested on charges of assault with intent to murder and resisting and obstructing arrest, as well as an outstanding warrant. The person she was accused of stabbing was treated at the hospital and released, according to WOOD.
Honestie says she is now terrified to even walk out of her back door.
“I’m afraid to open or go near my back door,” Honestie said. “Because of what happened.”
When asked what she would want to tell police, she replied, “I’m just wondering why they did that to me.”
Grand Rapids Police confirmed that the family has filed a formal complaint and that they are now investigating themselves over the matter. As there is a current investigation underway, they chose not to release any more information.
Press Release: Internal Investigation Opened After Arrest of Attempted Murder SuspectGrand Rapids, MI (December 11,…
“I wanted to be a detective or police officer, but now I don’t want anything to do with those kind of things,” Honestie said.
UPDATE: Video was released showing the horrifying moments of Honestie’s assault with a deadly weapon and kidnapping.
Sadly, this sort of mistake is not an isolated incident. While police claim innocent people “fit the description” all the time, even children find themselves in terrifying situations because of this negligence.
As TFTP reported last year, police chased down a 10-year-old boy named Legend Preston who they apparently mistook for an armed robbery suspect — and then told his mother to fill out a report if she “had something to say about it.”
Although Legend might easily be mistaken for an older child, the suspect Newark police were searching for was twice as old— and where Legend’s hair is closely cropped, the suspect sports braids that fall below his collarbone.
“Some police started coming this way with guns pointed at me, and then I ran into the backyard,” Legend recalled.
The 10-year-old had been playing basketball at a neighborhood court when the ball escaped into the street. Evidencing how terrifying the incident was for an innocent child, Legend says he thought the cops were chasing him with guns drawn because he ran into the street to grab the ball.
“I ran because they thought that I rolled the ball into the street on purpose, and they were just holding shotguns at me trying to shoot me,” he explained.
In his mom’s heart-wrenching video posted to Facebook, the obviously terrified and shy Legend cries silently while appearing to try to make sense of what happened.
Legend and Honestie have now had their entire view of police officers tainted because they were the victims of overzealous training and negligence.
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