St. Paul police violently arrest a black man for sitting on bench, waiting for his children (VIDEO)
Aug 28, 2014 10:38am PDT by Jen Hayden
From the Twin Cities Daily Planet:
The video, shot by the man’s cellphone, shows his interaction with officers as he attempts to pick up his children from New Horizon Academy in downtown St. Paul. As the officers force the man to put his hands behind his back, he drops his phone and the video goes black, but the audio continues and we hear the man crying for help and proclaiming that his kids are watching. Both officers in the video are white.
“Why do I have to let you know who I am?” the man tells the first female officer at the beginning of the video. “I don’t have to let you know who I am if I haven’t broken any laws.”
More transcription from the video and the Twin Cities Daily Planet:
From the following dialogue, it appears the police were called by a store clerk, who was upset over the man sitting in front of his store. The man in the video tells the officer he was sitting in front of the store for 10 minutes as he waited for his kids to get out of school, and that the area is public and he had a right to sit there.
“The problem was —” the female officer begins.
“The problem is I’m black,” the man fires back. “It really is, because I’m not sitting there with a group of people. I’m sitting there by myself. By myself, not causing a problem.”
Eventually a second male officer approaches the man in the video and attempts to restrain him.
“I’ve got to go get my kids,” the man tells the second officer, pulling his arm away. “Please don’t touch me.”
“You’re going to go to jail then,” the second officer says.
“I’m not doing anything wrong,” the man replies.
See the incredibly disturbing video below the fold.
The outrageous incident actually happened in January, but police kept the confiscated phone for six months.
All charges against Chris Lollie, the man in the video, were eventually dropped:
The police report says the man was arrested on suspicion of disorderly conduct and obstructing the legal process. Here’s the St. Paul PD’s official version of events:
Squad 524, M. Johnson/ 526, B. Schmidt were called to the First National Bank Building (332 Minnesota) on a report of uncooperative male refusing to leave. Officers later made contact with this male… who refused to cooperate and would not give his name. He was later arrested for Trespassing, Disorderly Conduct, and Obstructing Legal Process (Citation #620900211109).
The man was charged with trespassing, disorderly conduct, and obstructing the legal process, but those charges were later dropped.
More community discussion can be found in Lollardfish’s diary.