Washington, D.C. -- A cell phone video uploaded to Twitter this week has sparked outrage in a community. According to the uploader, a group of teens was racially profiled while they attempted to get money out of the ATM.
The video below shows a violent police takedown, assault, and handcuffing of 18-year-old Jason Goolsby by multiple D.C. police officers. According to the person filming, Mike Brown, the teens were racially profiled after a "white couple felt uncomfortable" and called the police.
We where approached because a white couple felt uncomfortable around me and my friend in the bank , this is how the police responded ...
On Tuesday, activists in the area organized a protest seeking #JusticeForJason. The turn out was rather significant considering the short timeframe involved in the organization.
The organizer of the event, Erika Totten, told the DCist that:
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the man in the video is an 18-year-old that she previously taught English literature. "He's just one of the sweetest children that I’ve ever had the honor of teaching," she said. "Someone said they were scared. Because of his skin. Because he’s a black boy."
Ultimately, according to Totten, the teen wasn't charged with anything after the incident, in which he can be heard screaming in pain on the ground.
She's organized the protest—"a direct reponse to the police brutality that they inflicted on this 18 year old boy"—to begin at 8th and M Streets SE at 1:30 p.m. They plan to head over to the bank where they say the arrest took place.
"When you think about the mayor's proposal to put more police on the street—this is what we have to deal with," Totten said. "No one is wearing papers around their neck," she said in reference to the plan's emphasis on people with prior records.
Her former student, she said, is the type of kid who was "wrapped up in his music, in supporting other people." He's the kind of kid who filmed a promo video for his school singing 'my school is awesome,' she said.
According to the official police report, after the two teens were assaulted and handcuffed, they were both released without charges. The statement read:
The initial call was for a suspicious person, three subjects may be trying to rob people at the ATM. The location for the call was 6th St and Pennsylvania Ave SE. Officers in the area responded to the assignment. One individual fled on foot from the police, was chased, and then taken down. The individual resisted, and was handcuffed while resisting after he refused to stop. The person making the video was interfering with police, and was also detained while the incident was investigated. Neither individual was arrested.
For being "suspicious," two teens were assaulted and temporarily deprived of their freedom. After watching the video below, it is no wonder why Goolsby would have wanted to leave the scene -- his very life was in danger.
This is what a police state looks like.