Several racial profiling incidents have put children of color in encounters with police in recent weeks. The situations have raised questions and arguments about civil rights.
Minnesota police handcuffed African-American kids at a park Tuesday, a video posted by Brianna Lindell on Facebook revealed. At least four young people — appearing to be between 12 and 15 years old according to a witness — were confronted by officers from the Minneapolis Parks Department. The cops pointed guns at the children before two of them were handcuffed in front of a squad car, the witness added.
Cops were called to the scene after a white teenager, who the witness guessed was about 17 years old, threatened the teens with a knife and garbage can. The teen had also hurled the N-word at the young people, the witness said in the video.
Two officers are seen escorting two of the handcuffed young men to the backseat of a squad car. One unidentified officer then goes up to bystanders, including the witness videotaping the incident, to ask if anyone had any questions. The officer was asked why the young people were being arrested; they were not under arrest, he said. The young people were runaways, and officers hadn’t tracked down the white teen who was responsible for the disturbance, the officer also said.
A woman then told her account of the incident to the officer, the video showed. A Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board press conference is planned to address the incident on Wednesday, City Pages reported.
Another recent incident involved cops being called on a 12-year-old boy who delivered newspapers in Arlington, Ohio. Brandie Sharp, the boy’s mother, pointed out in a Facebook post how horrible it is that children of color can’t even work without being racially profiled.
An Ohio resident also called police on a 12-year-old kid entrepreneur who cut grass as part of his summer business. Reginald Fields, however, bounced back with more people requesting his services as a result of the incident in Maple Heights, a city outside of Cleveland.
The recent incidents have sparked conversations about the civil rights of children and people of color.