Bridgeport, CT — A glaring act of intimidation and police misconduct was caught on video Monday as a man simply tried to file a police complaint. Instead of being given the form to fill out the complaint, an innocent man was threatened, harassed and thrown out of a public building.
That man was DonTrell Brown, who knows his rights, the law, and the importance of practicing them. However, this exceptional ability often makes him the target of police retaliation.
On June 30, Brown was arrested by police in spite of having committed no crime. He live-streamed the entire debacle.
Police claimed Brown walked to the front of the courthouse, called 9-1-1, reported he had loaded guns, and said he was going to come in. According to police, they say Brown then began recording and laid down his guns on the front steps of the courthouse.
In the video, however, we hear nothing about Brown allegedly placing weapons on the steps of the courthouse as the reason for his arrest. Had Brown actually done this, you can rest assured that he would have been met by a dozen militarized SWAT team officers.
To back up Brown’s side of the story as well, at 5:04 in the video, the officer confirms that Brown’s weapon is, in fact, on Brown and not on the steps of the courthouse.
Also in the video, the officer confirmed that Brown called the non-emergency line, not 9-1-1.
It was entirely clear that Brown was arrested for flexing his rights.
Brown tells the Free Thought Project that after he was arrested, police unlawfully searched his car, broke his door, and stole his cologne. So, naturally, Brown wanted to file a complaint against the department for their misdeeds.
As Brown walked into the police station to file a complaint on Monday, it became quickly apparent that they were not going to let him do so.
Immediately after walking into a public building to legally and appropriately file a formal complaint, Brown was confronted by Sgt. Devone of the Bridgeport police department.
All Brown was asking for was a complaint form — that is it. Instead of simply giving the man a form to file a complaint, however, Brown was threatened and forced to leave.
This officer then took it upon himself to declared that Brown was somehow not a member of the public.
“Why are you getting so close to me”? Brown asked.
“Because this is where I work and this is MY place!” exclaimed the angry cop, apparently laying claim to the entire publicly funded building as his own.
“But this is a public place,” says Brown, before he was rudely interrupted by Devone.
“YOU are NOT part of the public!” demands Devone.
“I am still considered the public,” argues Brown.
“You are a visitor here,” asserts Devone in a failed attempt to justify his previous statement.
Devone hardly conducts himself in a manner fit for a public servant. He was immediately confrontational, rude, threatening and hostile. In fact, he even confirmed on the video that he was indeed ‘hostile.’
“You’re gonna do what I tell you, or you’re gonna find this public servant is a very hostile individual,” threatens Devone.
“All I want is a complaint form,” says Brown before he’s swarmed by cops who throw him out of a public space for the sole act of requesting to file a complaint.
After he is thrown out, one unidentified officer in plainclothes actually talks to Brown in a rational manner. He immediately understands all Brown wanted was a complaint form. So, he goes inside to get him one. Problem solved.
All the first officer had to do was grab a piece of paper and hand it to Brown. However, he chose to escalate the situation into a hostile and potentially violent confrontation rather than get the paper. Sgt Devone’s actions are the epitome of what’s creating the divide in America today.
Until police realize this is the type of behavior creating the animosity, the situation will continue to decline.