A Phoenix man and his wife recently filed a $10 million dollar claim after a disturbing video shows officers as they violent accost the family over a misunderstanding from a doll, according to the Phoenix New Times.
“The police officers committed battery, unlawful imprisonment, false arrest, infliction of emotional distress, and violation of civil rights under the fifth and 14th amendments of the United States Constitution,” the claim states.
In one of the several videos that captured the incident, officers can be seen and heard yelling at Dravon Ames, 22, his pregnant fiancée, Iesha Harper, and their two young children outside of their child caretakers home. Officers were called to the scene after Ames’ 4-year-old daughter allegedly walked out of the nearby store with a doll that cost $1 on May 29.
The officers responded with guns drawn, yelling violent obscenities like “You’re gonna f—–g get shot!” and “put your f—–g hands up!”
According to the claim, an officer punched Ames in the back and spread his legs apart with his foot. In the video, an officer points in Harper’s face yelling that she should have heeded his warning, then yanks her as she holds her 1-year old child. The person who recorded the video tries to verbally intervene once the officer touches Harper. Because of the interaction, the family also saId the 1-year-old sustained an injury.
“We’re thinking we’re gonna get shot cause he kept threatening, ‘I’m gonna shoot you in the face,’” Ames said in an interview with New Times.“We were so scared.”
Ames said that although he and his fiancée were detained in the back of the police car, they were not arrested or ticketed. The Phoenix Police Department has not yet identified the officers involved in the event.
Rev. Jarrett Maupin who serves as an advocate for the family agrees that officers responded in an unwarranted, violent manner.
“Clearly, excessive force was used. Clearly, policies and procedure were not followed. Clearly, body cameras were not being utilized. Clearly, the officers felt empowered to be disrespectful and abusive,” Mupin said. “What we demand to know is, what kind of background these officers have? They held toddlers and a pregnant woman at gunpoint, grabbed a mother and infant by the neck, dislocated a 1-year-old’s arm, endangered a delicate pregnancy, terrorized and tortured a young father, and nobody was charged or jailed. These officers must be held accountable. We want justice.”