Rochester police pepper sprayed 9 year old: The Rochester police handcuffed and pepper-sprayed a 9-year-old girl acting a report of “family trouble”, according to Rochester Deputy Police Chief Andre Anderson.
The footage released from two body cameras on police officers on Sunday showed the police putting the girl in handcuffs and trying to get her inside the police vehicle while she was seen crying and calling for her father. When the girl refused to get inside the vehicle, the police officers used pepper spray in her.
Ander said that girl was admitted to Rochester General Hospital and was later discharged.
During a news conference, the Mayor of Rochester, Lovely Warren said that she had talked to the parents of the girl and that the city’s mental health team will soon contact the family.
“It is clear from the video that we need to do more in supporting our children and families,” Warren said
Rochester Police Chief Cynthia Herriott-Sullivan gave his statement at the news conference and said that what happened was unacceptable.
The Chief said, “I’m not going to stand here and tell you that for a 9-year-old to have to be pepper-sprayed is OK. It’s not.”
“I don’t see that as who we are as a department, and we’re going to do the work we have to do to ensure that these kinds of things don’t happen,” she added.
The police officers were called at a house on January 29 and they were told that the girl was being suicidal. Anderson said that the girl “indicated that she wanted to kill herself and she wanted to kill her mom.” The body camera footage shows the police trying to restrain the girl and the argument between the girl and her mother.
Anderson said that police officers were trying to take the child to an area hospital. According to him, the girl also kicked an officer and knocked his body camera. The pepper spray was used to get her inside the police vehicle, Anderson said. He added that he is not “making any excuses for what transpired” and that the police department “looking at a culture change” is in process of making changes and reviewing policies.
At one point, one officer is heard telling her, “You’re acting like a child,” to which the girl responded, “I am a child!”.
Mayor Warren said she has directed the police to conduct a complete and thorough investigation of the incident and said she welcomes the review of what happened by the city’s police accountability board.
Feature image credit: CNN