Two Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies are in some trouble after their body camera footage from June 24 was reviewed by the department. According to ABC7 News, the video showed the officers violently detaining an elderly Black couple they accused of robbing a grocery store.
The officers responded to a report of a robbery in Lancaster, and matched the description of the suspects to a Black elderly couple, per the department, who also didn’t share what that description was. The video shows the deputy giving orders to the man who explains that he told the store to call the police in concern of a robbery and waited for them to arrive.
What robber has the police called on themself and waits around to see what happens? ... Anyway, as soon as the deputies pulled the handcuffs out, things escalated into a disturbing chain of events.
Read the description of the video from ABC7:
The department says deputies were apprehending a man and woman accused of shoplifting inside the store.
“Why am I under arrest ... for what?” the man is heard saying in the bodycam footage. “You are not under arrest, you are being detained,” responded the deputy.
“Detained for what?” asks the man, who begins to grow frustrated. “Calm down!” says another deputy.
After placing the man in handcuffs, the deputies then walk toward the woman, who was recording the encounter. They attempt to grab her arm, but she pushes the deputies away. “No, you can’t touch me!” yelled the woman.
“Stop. Stop!” the deputy said. She then screams after being thrown to the ground. “Get down on the ground!” the deputy yells.
“It’s already on YouTube live!” said the woman. The struggle continues and the deputy then says, “Stop it or I’ll punch you in the face.”
The woman responds by saying, “You punch me, you’re going to get sued.” The woman was pepper sprayed during the confrontation and accused the deputy of putting his knee on her neck.
In bystander footage of the incident, the man is heard telling the officers not to handle the woman so roughly because she has cancer after one deputy is seen yanking her by the neck. Activists told local reporters that the commotion was allegedly over a stolen cake from the bakery. The two left with a citation, but it’s not disclosed what they were cited for, per CNN.
The attorney for the deputies insisted the man and woman were not “innocent bystanders” in the case and inserted the classic (and honestly, tired) argument that they would have avoided conflict if they complied with the officers’ commands, per ABC7.
For now, the report says officers were reassigned from field duty “pending administrative review,” and it’s unclear if the two shoppers have lawyered up in response to the incident. If someone else really did steal that cake, they’re probably enjoying the last slice by now.