Georgia officer fired after using stun gun on Black woman

Associated Press (08/21)

LOGANVILLE, Ga. (AP) — A Georgia police department fired a white officer Friday after an arrest captured on video showed him using a stun gun on a Black woman.

Gwinnett County police fired Officer Michael Oxford after an internal investigation found he violated department policy and “did not meet our core values,” the agency said in a statement.

Before he was fired, Oxford had been placed on administrative duty following the encounter Tuesday, which was filmed on the front porch of a Loganville home and has since been viewed millions of times on the video-sharing app TikTok, news outlets reported.

The officer responded to the home at around 7:30 p.m. on a property damage call in which a neighbor reported a group of people had thrown a bottle at her car, according to a Gwinnett County police statement. She also told officers one of the group members threatened to assault her 9-year-old child.

Police said one of the women on the porch at a nearby home matched the description of a suspect in the complaint.

The video showed the officer speaking with another one of the women on the porch, identified by police as Kyndesia Smith, who could be heard saying: “You’re on our property.”

“We did not call you, I’m not going anywhere,” Smith said.

The officer responded that she was under arrest and grabbed her, later firing a stun gun at her, according to the video. The woman fell into bushes in front of the home screaming as the officer continued to struggle with her in an attempt to place her in handcuffs.

In another video obtained by news outlets, Smith appeared to kick at the officer as he pushed her into the back of a police car.

The police statement alleged the officer gave the woman “several warnings” and told her she would be stunned if she resisted commands.

“The police department takes all use of force seriously,” the statement said, concluding: “An investigation into this incident is being conducted.”

The woman’s mother, Aytra Thomas, spoke out against the officer’s use of force and told WSB-TV in an interview Thursday that the arrest “didn’t have to go that way.”

https://apnews.com/c9a4a5ca0c9b9ac479ddc7d6ad22dffb

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistribute

Posted in: Police, Police Brutality/Abuse of Authority, Police Equipment/Technology, Policies & Practices, Public Safety, Stun Guns, Training/Education, Use of Force

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