Cops pointed their guns and yelled profanities at a father and pregnant mother because one of their two young daughters stole a doll from a Family Dollar. A copy of the full police report reflects major discrepancies and omissions between the officer’s account and footage captured by witnesses.
One of those videos has since gone viral. Officer Christopher Meyer wrote a report that failed to mention a number of details, including a fellow officer holding the mother and daughters at gunpoint, Meyer's violent threats against the family, and Meyer kicking the leg of the handcuffed father, Dravon Ames.
On Saturday, ABC15 reported that more details about the incident had surfaced. During the encounter, the arresting cops turned off their dash and body cameras, and claimed they “feared for their lives” that the mother would kill them.
The family filed a notice of claim on Wednesday, which is a precursor to a lawsuit. The claim states the police injured Ames, that one of the officers told Ames in front of his kids that he was going to shoot him in the face, and that the mother, Iesha Harper, who's five months pregnant, was handcuffed and thrown face-first onto a police car.
An internal investigation is now underway, according to Phoenix Police Department Chief Jeri Williams.
The video was captured outside an apartment complex after the family had left a Family Dollar.
The police said that Harper thought one of her daughters took the doll because they didn’t have money to buy it. The parents were handcuffed and detained inside police cars before they were released. Ames also received a traffic citation for driving on a suspended license.
Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego released a statement on Saturday. “We are speeding up the implementation of body-worn cameras across our police force," it said. "Every single precinct will have body worn-cameras by August.”