DETROIT – Police have released bodycam footage from a scene in Southwest Detroit, where an officer was stunned Wednesday by a woman with a Tase gun.
Detroit police said officers were responding to a call about children in a car smoking marijuana when neighbors interfered with the police.
Officers said they were trying to conduct a traffic stop when residents started acting out, leading to an officer being stunned by a Tase gun. Residents said police were using excessive force when the weapon was used.
Here's the video released by the Detroit Police Department. WARNING: There is strong and profane language in the video.
DPD released the following statement about the incident on its Facebook page:
"As promised, in an effort to maintain transparency with our community, we are releasing body camera footage from the incident that occurred in Southwest Detroit, in the 3600 block of Clippert on July 5, 2017.
"Previous media reports indicate that Ms. Smith stated that officers were using excessive force when an officer was tased (sic). This video refutes her statement and shows that no officer was engaged in using force at the time in which the female assaulted our officer with a Taser.
"We are a constitutional policing agency and will continue to strive to maintain a respectful and honest relationship with our community; and we only ask the same in return."
Residents' side of story
People who claim to live in neighborhoods where police aren't frequent visitors said they had to grab their phones to videotape the encounter. Others said residents should stop taping and let the officers do their jobs.
"In Southwest Detroit, we get harassed by cops, so we record," Tineika Smith said. "That's just to protect us."
Smith's son was arrested by police.
Officers said the residents weren't just recording video, but interfering with a traffic stop and getting too close. When one man was told to get a cellphone out of an officer's face, things started to get out of control.
Neighbors said police grabbed the man, and the disagreement escalated.
"They drug him over there and were punching him and choking him out -- six to eight cops, to the point he was gasping for air and choking and vomiting," Smith said.
That's when another woman apparently ran into a nearby house and returned with a Taser gun. She targeted the officers, who were holding her stepson.
"She panicked, and to save his life, she (used a Taser on) a cop," Smith said.
"She was coming full force with a Taser and pepper spray to assault those officers," Detroit police Cmdr. Whitney Walton said.
Detroit police addressed the incident Thursday, telling a different story. They said the family was told to stay on the porch, but instead came running at officers.
"They can record," Walton said. "They can observe, just don't interfere."
The main discrepancy in the stories is that police said the first man ran at them, and neighbors said he was just standing near police videotaping. The video doesn't prove either version of events.
The man, as well as the woman who stunned the officer, were arrested, and the children in the car were given tickets and released.
Police said the officer wasn't injured.
Stay with ClickOnDetroit.com for updates.