Lansing Police Department apologizes after stunning video exhibits officers handcuffing 12-year-old Tashawn Bernard

Shocking footage captured the second a 12-year-old black boy was handcuffed and dragged right into a police automotive after police mistook him for a suspect in a spate of automotive thefts.

Tashawn Bernard was taking out trash exterior his residence in Lansing, Michigan, on Thursday when he was confronted by a police officer brandishing a gun, considering the boy was a thief who had fled on foot earlier that day.

A surprised onlooker started filming the arrest as at the very least 4 officers and a fleet of automobiles descended on the parking zone exterior the schoolboy’s residence, watching his father Michael berate police for “traumatizing” his son.

Officials say Tashawn matched the outline of a suspect in neon inexperienced shorts and a white shirt, however his household’s lawyer reportedly disputed this, saying he was carrying a grey shirt.

The video sparked a fierce backlash that embarrassed police and town’s mayor into issuing a number of apologies and explanations.

Bernard household legal professionals, Rico and Ayanna Neal, mentioned the 12-year-old is so distressed by the ordeal that he now “doesn’t want to go out… not even to get the mail.”

Shocking photographs started when the black little one was handcuffed by a white officer

At the identical time because the boy was led away, his livid father Michael went exterior to see what was happening

Michael Bernard demanded solutions from the police, and at one level was heard condemning the police for arresting his son based mostly on a bodily description of a suspect

The video of the arrest was seen greater than 3.5 million occasions in lower than a day after it was posted to TikTok, which opened with Tashawn already in handcuffs moments after dumping his trash into a big blue dumpster.

As the boy hangs his head and appears to alternate just a few phrases with the officer, his father was heard working out of his home and exclaiming, “I am his father.”

During a digital press convention on Friday, Michael mentioned he knew one thing was mistaken when Tashawn took longer than standard to take out the trash, including that by the point he bought out, “the police were all around him.” .

After seeing his son strolling throughout the parking zone, Michael turned and put his head in his fingers when the police confirmed as much as clarify the arrest.

While a lot of the footage is inaudible because of the distance at which it was filmed, Michael could possibly be heard elevating his voice as officers continued to justify the arrest.

“You always use that excuse, man,” he mentioned, including, “It doesn’t matter — once you’re black, you fit every description, the bottom line,” he added.

After the police lastly realized their blunder, Tashawn solemnly walked again to his father earlier than bursting into tears

With his emotional son standing by, Michael yanked in three of the feminine officers because the officer who made the arrest walked away

While Michael continues to plead his son’s case, Tashawn is led away from his father and right into a police automotive whereas nonetheless handcuffed.

At that time, backup officers possible known as within the earlier chase arrive on the scene and a fleet of at the very least three extra police SUVs roll into the parking zone.

Michael additionally notices the arrest being caught on movie by an onlooker, main him to stroll up the sidewalk along with his fingers outstretched and proclaim the incident to be “bulls.”

“They’re traumatizing my son,” he continued, with the particular person behind the digicam agreeing that the arrest was “some wrong s***.”

“All these cops for a teenager,” one other particular person behind the digicam provides, as Tashawn is lastly free of the automotive and untied by 4 officers standing round him.

The boy seems to be speaking to the officers for a couple of minute earlier than working again to his father on the sidewalk. As the officers slowly approached, somebody was heard to say ‘now they are going to lie’.

Tashawn couldn’t even face the police as he stood subsequent to his father in tears, whereas Michael beckoned the police to rush up so he may spherical up and berate them.

Tashawn Bernard (heart) seen throughout a video press convention along with his dad and mom. His father Michael (left) slammed police for his or her daring arrest, as their legal professionals say they’re “examining all legal options,” together with presumably submitting a lawsuit

The household’s legal professionals, Ayanna and Rico Neal (pictured collectively), mentioned Tashawn was too scared to even get the mail after the terrifying ordeal.

The Bernard household say they’re “examining all legal options” within the wake of the arrest, together with “the possibility of filing a lawsuit,” their legal professionals mentioned. They claimed that they haven’t acquired any extra data from the police, aside from what they’ve seen on social media.

Lansing police confronted fierce backlash following the arrest, partially attributable to public statements supposed to elucidate the circumstances of the arrest.

Lansing police launched two statements on Friday, the primary sparking anger early this morning after saying the arrest was merely a case of “wrong place, wrong time.”

In a follow-up assertion once more explaining how police felt Tashawn was carrying related apparel to a suspect, Lansing Police Chief Ellery Sosobee defended the arrest as “respectful and professional.”

Authorities mentioned the “unfortunate misunderstanding” unfolded after a witness to a automotive theft “described that a suspect was wearing neon pants and a white shirt.”

“A responding officer saw a person matching this description and attempted to make contact, but the person fled and ran west to the nearby apartment complex,” the primary assertion learn.

Another officer was close by and noticed the younger man pictured within the viral video carrying a really related outfit and contacted him. The first officer was in a position to reply and make clear that the younger man on the video was not the suspect who fled earlier.

“Once this information was obtained, the young man was released and officers continued to search the area. Community relations is a top priority for us as a department, from the top down. We hope that we can put this unfortunate case of ‘wrong place, wrong time’ behind us and continue to represent the community we serve.”

The Facebook submit included two grainy photographs of Tashawn subsequent to the arrest suspect, who was carrying equally coloured clothes, however many on-line famous that the suspect was clearly a lot taller than the kid.

Lansing police launched a press release on Friday, the day after the arrest, that angered many after it tried to dismiss the incident as ‘wrong place, wrong time’

In his follow-up assertion despatched hours after the primary, de Sosebee defended the arrest, saying it’s an unlucky second amid the division’s push to “address the recent auto thefts plaguing our city.”

In addition, officers yesterday detained a younger man carrying related clothes who was in the identical house advanced as a suspected automotive thief who fled officers on foot,” the assertion continued.

“When the officer made first contact, it was near a trash can, but after throwing out all the trash. The young man was then released to his father when he was eliminated as the accused.

The commander on the scene contacted the young man’s father and explained the situation and apologized for the misunderstanding. I have reviewed the incident and can confirm that the officer who contacted the young man and detained him during his investigation was respectful and professional.

“It is unfortunate that incidents like this happen, but through communication and information sharing, we can help people understand the whole story,” the police chief concluded.

While apologizing for “this incident had such an effect on this young man and his family,” Sosobee urged the neighborhood to “consider all the facts of the situation before passing judgment.”