You would think that “don’t drive into a crowd,” would be a pretty easy rule to follow, but for one cop in Tacoma that was just too much to ask. Protests took place in Tacoma, Wash., on Sunday night after video spread of a cop driving their car into a crowd of people and running over a person.
CNN reports that 150 protesters gathered in downtown Tacoma after the 58-year-old officer seen driving in the video was placed on administrative leave. The officer was among several police units responding to an alleged street race, according to the News Tribune. There were approximately 100 people on the scene blocking an intersection.
Video of the incident shows that a crowd of bystanders had gathered at the front of the vehicle. Wendy Haddow, spokeswoman for the Tacoma Police Department, told the News Tribune that the crowd began to bang on the window, which led to fears from the officer that they would break his window. So, naturally, the officer responded by backing up, revving his engine and driving into the crowd.
Look, I would be more inclined to believe it was an act of fear if the dude didn’t straight up rev his engine like he was Dominic Toretto before charging into a group of people.
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While two people were hospitalized as a result, the injuries were not believed to be life threatening, with one of the victims reported to have already left the hospital. The incident is now being investigated by the Pierce County Force Investigation Team, an independent team that investigates use of force by officers in Pierce County.
Police Chief Mike Ake issued a press release saying he is “concerned that our department is experiencing another use of deadly force incident.”
“I send my thoughts to anyone who was injured in tonight’s event and am committed to our Department’s full cooperation in the independent investigation and to assess the actions of the department’s response during the incident,” Ake said. Tacoma Mayor Victoria Woodards also issued a statement expressing her concern and calling on the city manager and police chief to hold those involved in the incident accountable.
“As a use of deadly force, this incident is being taken very seriously and the scene has appropriately been turned over to the Pierce County Force Investigation Team for independent investigation,” Woodards said in her statement. “I continue to be proud of Tacoma’s long-standing reputation as a place of strong, non-violent advocacy and activism.”
A meeting to discuss the incident will be held by the Community Police Advisory Board on Monday evening.