Police in Texas are investigating an officer after a video was posted on YouTube that shows him detaining a teenage girl at a pool party on June 5.
Dajerria Becton, the girl in the video, told Fox4 News in Dallas:
He told me to keep walking, and I kept walking. And then I’m guessing he thought we were saying rude stuff to him… He grabbed me, and he twisted my arm on the back of my back and he shoved me in the grass and started pulling the back of my braids. And I was telling him to get off me because my back was hurting bad.
She was a guest invited to the party, Becton told Fox.
The head of McKinney Police Department, Greg Conley, said during a press conference yesterday (June 7) that the officer in question had been placed on administrative leave. He said that police were called to the private neighborhood pool to disperse a crowd.
He said one adult man was arrested for interfering with the duties of a police officer, while a 14-year-old girl—Becton, who is black— was “temporarily detained” and later released to her parents.
Conley confirmed the police had seen the video and pledged a “full investigation” into it. Two officers in internal affairs will interview the officers and civilians involved in the incident.
Brandon Brooks, a white teenager who took the video and posted it on YouTube, told Buzzfeed that police didn’t try to detain him. “Everyone who was getting put on the ground was black, Mexican, Arabic,” he said. “[The cop] didn’t even look at me. It was kind of like I was invisible.”
Dallas-based photojournalist Elroy Johnson interviewed a 19-year-old resident named Tatiana, who said she hosted the cookout at the pool for friends and a fight broke out. She said that some of the other people at the pool were using racial slurs and telling the black attendees to return to low-income housing.
McKinney is near Dallas, Texas and has a population of about 131,000— 10.5% of whom are black. The overwhelming majority are white, according to the US Census.
Fox and the Dallas Morning News reported that the officer on leave is named Eric Casebolt. McKinney police refused to confirm his identity when contacted by Quartz this morning.