Outrage After City Council Says They Can't Fire Cops Who Did Nothing Wrong

Dravon Ames and his girlfriend Lesha Harper asked the city council to fire the police officers who arrested them.

Phoenix, AZ – The mayor explained to angry citizens on Wednesday night that the Phoenix City Council doesn’t have the authority to fire police officers without giving them due process.

A family who was arrested after the father and daughter were both caught shoplifting has filed a $10 million lawsuit against the city and demanded that the officers who arrested them be fired.

The incident occurred on May 27 at the Family Dollar store on McDowell Road and 36th Street after store employees notified police about several shoplifters who were leaving the store, the Arizona Republic reported.

Surveillance video from the store showed that numerous members of the family were actually shoplifting.

Phoenix Police Officer Nicholas Welch was already at the Dollar Store dealing with another shoplifting complaint when the manager pointed out 22-year-old Dravon Ames, 24-year-old Lesha Harper, their two young daughters, and 48-year-old Renita Lynn Biscoe and said they had stolen a bunch of toys, according to the incident report from the Phoenix Police Department.

Store surveillance video showed that prior to the store manager’s intervention, Biscoe and the four year old were standing near the checkout inside the store.

The little girl was carrying a Baby Alive doll.

All of a sudden, Biscoe put down the items she was holding and left the store. The four-year-old girl followed her, still carrying the doll which had not been paid for.

A second surveillance video showed Ames inside the Family Dollar as he appeared to be shopping for underwear.

In the video, Ames was holding a package before he turned his back to the camera, and then when he turned back around, the package was gone, the Arizona Republic reported.

That’s when the store manager notified the officer who was already there in response to another shoplifting call.

When the suspects saw Officer Welch looking at them, they fled to their vehicle in the parking lot, but the officer managed to stop Biscoe from leaving, the Arizona Republic reported.

Biscoe put down the foil she had been holding before she left the store, so the officer didn’t see her actually steal anything from the Family Dollar, but it turned out that she was already wanted on warrants by Phoenix, the city of El Mirage, and the Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS), according to the police report.

Officers attempted to stop Ames, but he fled from them in his vehicle.

An officer located Ames driving after he fled, and initiated a high-risk traffic stop on him at a nearby apartment complex.

The officers ordered the occupants to put their hands up.

Ames began yelling at police that he hadn’t done anything wrong and then reached for something between the seats, according to the police report.

The officer pulled his weapon and ordered them again to put their hands up while saying, "You're gonna f---ing get shot!"

Officers continued to use profanity while giving orders to the family.

Ames started to comply by placing his hands on the steering wheel, but Harper yelled “I have my child in here. I am not putting my hands up!” according to the police report.

Backup officers arrived and Ames complied with orders to get out of the vehicle and was taken into custody.

A cell phone video filmed by a bystander showed Ames lying on the pavement on his stomach while an officer handcuffed him, KPNX reported.

Then the officer stood Ames up and pushed him up against side of a police SUV and ordered him to spread his legs apart.

The video showed the when Ames failed to spread his legs far enough apart, the officer kicked Ames’ right leg out further out, and the man fell to his knees.

Police found the stolen doll in the backseat of the suspects’ vehicle, according to the police report.

Harper told police she was in the grocery store next door and her aunt, Biscoe, had taken her four-year-old daughter into the Family Dollar.

She said she knew the doll had to be stolen when she saw it because she knew her aunt and daughter had no money when they went into the store, according to the police report.

Harper said she heard Officer Welch tell them to stop, and that she told Ames to stop, but that he ignored her and continued to flee.

Police did not arrest Harper and she was released shortly thereafter.

When police interviewed Ames, he admitted to stealing a pair of underwear from the Family Dollar, according to the police report.

He said that he threw them out the window somewhere between the store and the apartment complex.

The police report said Ames admitted to officers that he ran because he was scared because his license was suspended from a DUI.

Ames was issued a citation for driving on a suspended license and released. His car was impounded, according to the police report.

No one was arrested for shoplifting because the store manager declined to prosecute, The Washington Post reported.

Maricopa County court records showed that Ames was involved in a car crash on Oct. 31, 2018 and was arrested in connection with assaulting two officers who responded to the scene, the Arizona Republic reported.

Ames and Harper attended a city council meeting on Wednesday night and demanded that the city fire the officers who had stopped them.

The couple has tried to make the issue over accusing a toddler of shoplifting and a rough arrest of Ames rather than the fact the father fled police because he didn't have a driver's license.

Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego explained that the city council cannot fire administrative employees under the city’s charter, the Associated Press reported.

City legal staff also explained that the memorandum of understanding between the city and the police union guarantees officers the right to due process.

The officers are the subject of an internal affairs investigation into the incident and their futures are in the hands of Phoenix Police Chief Jeri Williams and the police department’s professional standards bureau, the Associated Press reported.

At a meeting on Tuesday, the city council voted to research software that could identify problem officers.

The city council also voted to consider doing a survey of the community’s attitudes toward the Phoenix Police Department, according to the Associated Press.

Ames said he was disappointed but not surprised by the city’s response to his complaints.

“People been dying in the streets of Phoenix for years and they don’t do anything about it,” Ames said. “We knew nothing was going to happen because it's been happening for years, but we’re going to keep fighting and hope for some change.”

Ames and Harper were accompanied to the meeting by the Reverend Jarrett Maupin, a liberal Baptist minister and self-proclaimed civil rights activist, the Associated Press reported.

Maupin insisted the city council could have voted to change its policies to give themselves the power to fire the officers in violation of the officers' union contract.

“Maybe we can move forward on a legal challenge and make things more equitable in the city for people of color that are facing an uphill battle against police that have exceptional and extremely immoral protections,” he suggested.

Comments (95)
No. 1-43
James Robinson
James Robinson

Outrage my ass. Gangsta and Black criminal entitlement. And the minister is a disgrace to the cloth. Civil Rights will only progress when those in their community fight for solutions to real injustice and racism and refuse to accept the false and spurious allegations of those who really deserve condemation.

shooter
shooter

Manufactured outrage.

I have an idea...let's just let all minorities commit all crimes with no repercussions at all, ever.

That way, there won't be any outrage when they aren't stopped, pursued, or arrested.

OK?

LEO0301
LEO0301

They want 10 million dollars because they got caught stealing!!! Black people really have a scam going. Commit a crime, get caught and immediately hire a shyster lawyer and file a lawsuit. No wonder both lawyers and blacks are equally hated by those of us who actually follow the laws.

LitheSteel
LitheSteel

They out and out believe that they don't have to obey laws.

Justme1950
Justme1950

ANOTHER ENTRANT in the GHETTO LOTTERY

Freedomfighter13
Freedomfighter13

Wow this comment section is like a Klan Rally

Theendisnear
Theendisnear

Im OUTRAGED the shoplifting family is not Incarcerated

ohioplayer1177
ohioplayer1177

Its like i am reading this all wrong. They were in a store shoplifting, cops told them to stop.. which anyone that was not stealing and even most people who were stealing would do but instead took off in a car with no drivers license and a baby in the back. When finally stopped they refused to put their hands up... Because a baby was in the car? And now after all that they are the victims? Victims of being entitled to shoplift, disobey lawful orders, not being able to to drive without a license? I honestly cant figure out how they could sue anyone for anything. Im fact the officers showed lots of restraint in not tazing them during any of this game they played. I can often read a story and see both sides of the issue or argument but this is as black and white as they get. Unfortunately I think that is the problem. Instead of taking responsibility and raising good children and demanding good behavior from your community the blacks have been told to play the victim and nothing is ever their fault. The media and the democratics are to blame for this. A large number of Americans are being told that white people are what causes all the issues in their community by the MSM. They are correct in some ways. White democratics encourage bad behavior by rewards. Single mom gets way more money then a married couple that probably wont get any and have to work hard to pay bills. More kids equal more money and a bigger section eight house. They effectively made living badly more beneficial then having mother and father in the house. Once the family falls apart the house does, then the neighborhood, then the schools, then the citys, counties, states, and lastly the nation. We must demand that people (of any color) who have a nuclear family be given every incentive to remain that way and those that dont need to have incentives to become one. Kick one of the parents out of the house and more time than not you get this. Chaos..

Ron1617
Ron1617

I think that the P.O.'s involved should get an attorney and file a 20 million lawsuit against the mutts in civil court for malicious defamation of character. They should be allowed to get as much for doing their jobs as the mutts get for committing a crime.

LunaMay
LunaMay

Outraged for what?? These scum bags got caught stealing and fled the police twice. The officers did absolutely nothing wrong.

Mig Alley
Mig Alley

Dravon Ames and his girlfriend Lesha Harper. Once again, npn 🙄

dcoskrey
dcoskrey

This is so freaking outrageous … where do you even begin. Unbelievable the mayor, instead of having the backs of the officers, and telling the thugs to f##k off, says "we can't fire them without due process". So freaking weak. How did we get here people? Seriously.

Mig Alley
Mig Alley

Give them some fireworks with short fuses to play with. Tough to steal when you don't have hands.

Excalibr4
Excalibr4

Thank God for Blue Lives Matter, who are not afraid to print the truth!

THEDUKE
THEDUKE

"Minister" my ass. All that title does in this community is get them an extra 20% off their grocery bill.

The more our nation continues to patronize , pacify, placate and accommodate these lost souls, the more they will ask for . They will never be satiated and only look at the overall situation like they have another "free ride" to take advantage of. Cut them off from the "free fish " handouts as they will never learn to fish on their own. They will just demand you provide them more fish.

Teijeiro2
Teijeiro2

AFTER ALL THAT "No one was arrested for shoplifting because the store manager declined to prosecute, The Washington Post reported." ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME? BOYCOTT DOLLAR STORES and Polices should REFUSE to respond to calls there.

lauraaz
lauraaz

We need aggressive prosecution of these crimes. Stop ignoring the laws and letting these people think they are above the law.

Wal7677
Wal7677

That is an ignorant comment, “both lawyers and blacks are equally hated by those of us who actually follow the laws.” First, people are hated by people who are wounded and hurting themselves. People who hate are trying to numb their own pain. Hurt people hurt people. Secondly, there are plenty of black cops putting their life on the line every evening. what is so sad is that they would die for you without questions because that is their character and yet you hate them because of their skin color. Every race has a criminal element. Crime and hate is a product of SIN not ethnicity.

Wal7677
Wal7677

You may be sure @LEO0301 was not referring to black people in general, I am not. I just quote the person, “lawyers and blacks are equally hated. I am black and I work in various areas of the Criminal Justice system. I have seen things that could cause someone to hate, I chose not to. Hate is a choice, and a all consuming disease. LEO0301 spoke his/her mind. That person lumps all people into categories instead of judging each person by their own actions. That person is wounded and has some serious issues that need to be addressed. The user name is LEO0301, I hope it does not stand for Law Enforcement Officer, if it does, they are not fit to wear the badge.

Lochemet
Lochemet

Ames and his lawyer are probably counting on the City to settle for a lesser amount with the hopes that they will get at least something out of it.

auldiedog
auldiedog

Almost Always black-skinned when it comes to threatening police officers doing their jobs. So seldom do we ever see an Asian, Hispanic, or White person act so disrespectful, threaten, resist, create an unsafe environment, and cause an hour to have to shoot them to protect the public.

Officers do NOT want to shoot you. They have to deal with and live with the stress and nightmares and PTSD of maiming and killing a human being. Our police officers all across our great country are committing suicide in droves these past years since the CRIMINAL-IN-CHIEF - the Obama regime - opened the floodgates of disrespect and assault on our first responders!

It is time for all of us law-abiding, police-loving and respecting, God-fearing UNITED STATES AMERICANS need to stand up and take action to support our law enforcement and first responders.

First off, when you see them in uniform in in public, THANK THEM for putting their lives on the line to protect your freedom.

Second, when you see them in a restaurant - police, border patrol, military, fire, EMT, etc, and you can afford it, pay for their meal, or send them dessert.

Third, when you hear about a first responder being charged with proven lies of excessive force or other arbitrary BS, please attend the hearings, city council meetings, and other formats, and show them your support!!!!!

It won’t be long before ‘911,’ ‘CBP,’ ‘first responder,’ and ‘police’ will have no meaning because no one will apply!!! Don’t wait for that to happen!

RunCop
RunCop

Negro please

gfc1963
gfc1963

They were shoplifting but they are the victims?? Oh they're black - that explains everything!!

BDV123
BDV123

And the City will give them a Settlement with your Tax Dollars!

Ladyfluterby
Ladyfluterby

Oh the poor little misunderstood victims! So let me get this straight. Dad steals from the Dollar store and then flees the police because he wasn't even suppose to be driving due to an accident while DUI. Auntie has warrants from 3 different cities and takes the 4 yr old to the store where she teaches her to steal. Mom sees doll and knows it's stolen because Auntie and daughter had no money. Store Manager at Dollar Tree get the police involved and then decides NOT to press charges. But it's the police officer who deserves to be fired for doing his job!!

This is all about the money and nothing more. These trashy people along with their scumbag lawyer think they have won the Ghetto Lottery and this is all about cashing in because it's easier then getting a job, living like a decent person and being responsible for themselves. Additionally, why are they suing the City, if they feel they were mistreated then go after Dollar Tree. After all it was THEIR Manager who started the whole thing by involving the police in the first place. I'd also be checking to see if there is any relationship between the store manager and these people. It's just seems weird to me that the officer happened to be there on another shoplifting case when this went down and the manager decides NOT to pursue charges against these people. Ask yourself why?

OldVet
OldVet

Time for judges to get the same intestinal fortitude the officers have to do their jobs. In other words stop the ghetto lottery and tell the liberal activists they have no case. Politicians need to do the same and support the officers and the law.

Terminaters168
Terminaters168

Trying to hit the ghetto lottery. Blacks again what a shock

ChefRay
ChefRay

The Attorney needs to be sanctioned, the Pastor needs to be defrocked, and James needs to go to some form of Institution for criminals, to be educated, and to earn the money to pay Restitution to the Officer who got injured by this nitwit, in 2018. Prison is a little harsh but Probation is not right either.

Woobie46
Woobie46

Every election in this state and county and city, names of Judges are included (obviously) and rated by bipartisan people. It's SO easy to see who should NOT be on the bench from these ratings. Look for them and vote!

nitrodave08
nitrodave08

Here is a simple cure so that this never happens again, DON"T BREAK THE LAW. It's so simple that a 5yr old can do it.

Conwol
Conwol

They figured they would get millions from this incident. Tough luck. This is the way they make their living. Stealing from stores, and then sueing if they get caught Nice racket if you can get away with it. Idiots.

HAWAIIBLUE
HAWAIIBLUE

The F’ing nerve of these people.

LynnSB
LynnSB

POS Family full of THIEVES !!!!! Looking for a Ghetto Lottery Win !!!

R10T
R10T

So criminals do this thing where they get their kids to steal stuff and cause a huge scene with the police... Ironically these are the same tactics Palestinians use, but I digress...

Doing all this fake outrage, media pull and high-dollar lawsuits is a win-win for criminals... There is absolutely no downside to this tactic. They pressure the businesses to drop the charges (which they did here), they pressure the cities to fire proactive cops and pressure councilmen to take lenient measures on crime.

Criminals win. This tactic of exploiting children, making criminals famous and demoralizing police is promoted.

If you don't immediately squash this, Arizona, then expect to see more of it.

Da$
Da$

"We didnt do nuffin!" Except repeatedly violate the law.

IseeWhereThisIsGoing
IseeWhereThisIsGoing

They have to know they won't win at trial... their goal is to get the city to settle with them for millions before the judge even gets to rule on the dismissal motion, so they will go away with less negative PR.

What the city should do is fight the frivolous lawsuit with all their strength and then go after the plaintiffs for attorney fees.

Wish505
Wish505

LOL anyone with any common sense can see what this is all about. Defense rest.

365
365

This entire incident, like too many others, is the fault of the business owner/management. "No one was arrested for shoplifting because the store manager declined to prosecute." Notice to business owners and other crime victims - if you don't want the police to take enforcement action don't call them. Second - "That’s when the store manager notified the officer who was already there in response to another shoplifting call." Your past actions appear to be why you have a shoplifting problem at your store. If you had thieves arrested and prosecuted you would have far fewer problems.

Raidergsmith
Raidergsmith

How dare the officers do their job. What kind of world do we live in where you can't commit crimes and get away with it?

Flynguy
Flynguy

J.A.S.Y.N. All cops should toss their badges into the streets. Let’s exterminate the vermin.

zyklonB4Obama
zyklonB4Obama

All Obama's fault. The lying, Muslim sympathizing pos whom enabled and instigated the belligerence against any authority or whites. Lead for his head is should be, could be, would be welcomed

THEDUKE
THEDUKE

Homie Robin Hood again.

Oldvlc
Oldvlc

Maybe we can watch as stores close their doors because no one is paying for merchandise. I know it is unfair for a store owner to buy stock and not give it away free, but that can only go on so long before there is no money in the owners' pockets.