Police in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, are investigating the arrest of a 13-year-old boy on Sunday after video posted to social media shows a white officer with his arm wrapped around the black teen’s neck.
An investigation was launched after the video posted by the boy’s aunt went viral with Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome promising a ‘prompt, transparent review’ of the ‘concerning encounter’.
Broome has also requested for the full body-cam footage of the incident to be made public.
The 23-second clip of the arrest shows the unnamed officer pinning the boy to the ground while others gathered around are heard shouting ‘You’re choking him!’ and ‘He’s a boy, get off of him!’
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Baton Rouge police is investigating the arrest of a 13-year-old boy on Sunday after social media video shows a white officer with his arm wrapped around the black teen’s neck
The 13-year-old has been named locally as Corey. He is pictured above as he left custody
At the end of the clip, another officer comes to help pick him up off the ground and place the teen in handcuffs.
The social media footage does not show what happened before or after the incident.
The teen, who has been named locally as Corey, and a 13-year-old female cousin were both arrested.
He was charged with resisting arrest, battery of a police officer and disturbing the peace.
The girl was taken into custody for resisting arrest, but she was not booked and later released to a parent.
It is not confirmed whether she is the girl seen in the clip also scuffling with police.
The boy was also released into the custody of his parents later on Sunday night and is not injured, his family claimed in social media posts.
According to The Advocate, Baton Rouge police said that the arrest was made after multiple complaints were made regarding a disturbance involving two families fighting in the area.
The group was said to be holding baseball bats, according to WBRZ.
Officers were able to deescalate the dispute after the first call without any arrests but were called back to the scene again 30 minutes later.
They said both parents and children were involved in the dispute.
A 23-second clip of the arrest was posted to social media by the boy’s aunt
The clip shows the officer with his arm around the boy’s neck as others watch on
The boy’s family shouted ‘You’re choking him!’ and ‘He’s a boy, get off of him!’ during the arrest
At the end of the clip, another officer helps to place the 13-year-old in handcuffs
The family has argued on social media that the officers arrested the boy after mistaking him for somebody else.
Broome and Police Chief Murphy Paul said during a press briefing on Monday that they have petitioned for police body-camera footage of the arrest be released after they reviewed it.
It requires court approval because the identities of juveniles are protected under state public records laws.
‘We have worked tirelessly to close this gap between our police officers and the citizens of our community,’ Broome said as she promised a full investigation.
‘We will not skirt around these issues. I will make sure this is thoroughly investigated.’
The boy’s family has hired civil-rights attorney Ron Haley who also called for the bodycam footage to be made public. It was made available to the family on Monday.
‘If that officer did not have a badge or a uniform on, and was an adult on the ground with a child in that manner, he’d be arrested,’ Haley said, according to WAFB.
‘Nowhere should an unarmed 13-year-old, who is not a danger to himself or others, be treated like a grown-up.
Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome announced in a press briefing on Monday that she has petitioned for body-cam footage of the incident to be made public
Baton Rouge Police Chief Murphy Paul said the officer involved has not been placed on leave
‘I appreciate the swift response from Mayor Broome and the promises made by Chief Paul. However, too many times in our community we see obvious police misconduct go unchecked and unpunished,’ he added.
Haley confirmed that he had reviewed the complete bodycam footage on Monday and said it shows a more complete version of the incident.
‘I commend Chief Paul for being consistent when it comes to these critical incidents,’ Haley told CNN.
‘It’s been 24 hours and the department has gotten information to the parents and attorneys and we have viewed the video.’
‘I am asking for patience until the footage is released. The videos of Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, Trayford Pellerin and countless others that have sparked this moment of change also create a heightened sense of angst and anxiety when it comes to interaction with law enforcement,’ he continued.
Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome (pictured) recently ordered the police department not to use police dogs to chase juveniles unless demanded
‘I’m sure (my client) didn’t wake on up Sunday believing he would be in the middle of a civil rights issue captivating the city. That is a lot of pressure on a young person.’
Broome said that no decision had yet been made on whether any of the officers involved should face disciplinary action.
The officer involved has not been placed on leave, Paul added, as he said that the department is investigating whether he followed protocol in the arrest.
He also declined to elaborate on the alleged battery complaints filed against the child.
Paul also said that the Baton Rouge police are open to examining and revaluating some policies and training as Haley questioned whether the department should have more stringent policies regarding interactions with juveniles.
The police chief pointed to an incident last summer in which the department hired a third-party company to investigate a case in which the arrest of a juvenile caused a major outcry when video was also posted to social media.
The bodycam footage was quickly released showing that the officer’s knee was on the juvenile’s back and not on his neck.
The Baton Rouge police department has faced other race-related scandal in the past few years.
In August, the department let a white man go after he admitted in questioning to killing a black panhandler.
In February 2019, a photo also resurfaced of some of the department’s detectives in blackface in 1993.
Last month, Baton Rouge City Council passed a $4.5 million settlement for Alton Sterling’s family. The 37-year-old black man was shot and killed by police in 2016.
In recent weeks, Broome also responded to a report from The Advocate and the Marshall Project which showed the Baton Rouge police department used police dogs to apprehend fleeing juveniles at an alarming rate.
Broome instructed Paul not to use dogs to chase juveniles unless it was needed.