Miami Gardens, FL -- The Miami Gardens police department is under fire this week after a disturbing video showed a massive cop pick a tiny teenage girl up and slam her into the pavement. Now, the girl's family is asking for justice while the police department is warning citizens "not to rush to judgement."
According to police, they were responding to a parking lot at a church which is common for after-school fights. The girl in the video was reportedly not in the fight, but she found herself in the cross-hairs of police anyway.
As Local 10 reports, the unidentified officer was called to reports of a fight April 18 outside of St. Monica Catholic Church at 3490 SW 191 St. A relative said the officer was mistaken when he believed the girl touched an officer, saying she was, in fact, reaching for her friend.
The video shows the massive unidentified police officer shoving the girl up against a fence before lifting her up and slamming her into the ground. The officer then places his knee in the back of the teen's neck to hold her down.
After witnessing this blatant act of brutality, the onlookers, who were mostly children, were shocked and erupted in gasps.
"My heart was broken. I could not believe this happened," said a relative, who did not want to be identified out of fear of reprisal. "She's on the fence, and the next thing, he picks her up and body slams her. He's like three times bigger than she is."
According to the Miami Herald, Ted Victor, a Broward teacher and founder of the Broward Social Network, an organization that mentors youth both professionally and politically, said he posted the video — taken by the teen’s friend — on his site after his coworker came to him telling him about what happened to her niece.
“I was outraged,” he said. “I am sure this young lady did something, but the question I would like to ask is what caused him to respond in that manner. The police brutality on young black people has to stop.”
In response to the outrage, the police department urged the public not to rush to judgement after seeing the cop slam a tiny girl to the ground.
"The investigation will include a review of all actions, to include those of the officer and the individual, who was arrested," Miami Gardens Police Chief Delma Noel-Pratt said. "We are asking that the public not rush to judgment, as these incidents must be fully investigated to ensure fairness to everyone involved."
As for what the girl's relative thinks of the cop, she is spot on.
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"He needs to probably have his head checked out for a little bit," she said.
Below is a video showing how cops now treat small teen girls for allegedly touching another officer.
Disturbingly enough, cops in South Florida have been all over the blotter recently for their extremely violent tendencies.
Just this week, TFTP reported the video of Deputy Jorge Sobrino who needlessly used excessive force against 27-year-old David Rafferty O'Connell as O'Connell was being observed in a hospital.
O'Connell was chained to a bed and not being violent at all when all of the sudden Sobrino lost his temper and punched the restrained man right in the face.
The same department who punched a man chained to a bed was also seen savagely beating a teenager for no apparent reason the week prior.
That incident was also caught on video and shows that when police first grabbed one teen to handcuff him, his friend approached the deputies to ask why he was being arrested. That teen was then doused in the face with pepper spray and thrown to the ground.
As the video shows, the teen was not initiating any violence toward the officers and was merely attempting to rub his eyes and possibly cover his head from the punches being doled out by the deputy.
As the teen lies face first on the ground, one deputy holds him down while another punches him. After a couple of punches, the deputy then grabs the teen's head and repeatedly smashes his face into the asphalt -- leaving behind a pool of blood.
The teen would later be found innocent of any charges and the two officers involved were suspended this week.
Residents of South Florida beware, your police officers have a tendency to be violent and, as the above cases illustrate, even restrained individuals and children are not safe.