Sacramento, CA – The family of a 12-year-old boy who allegedly spit on a police officer while resisting arrest during an expletive-filled tirade has threatened to file lawsuits over the boy’s arrest (video below).
The Sacramento Police Department (SPD) released bodycam footage of the April 28 incident on Wednesday, and cell phone footage of the boy’s arrest has also been shared widely online, The Sacramento Bee reported.
Sacramento Police Chief Daniel Hahn said that the officers handled the situation appropriately, and that the pre-teen’s antics forced them to place a “spit mask” over his head in order to “protect themselves and defuse the situation.”
“I am grateful that our officers were willing to proactively intervene when they observed suspicious activity, and that no on was injured during this encounter,” Chief Hahn added.
The altercation occurred near the intersection of El Camino Avenue and Del Paso Boulevard at approximately 7:50 p.m., after two Sacramento police officers noticed a private security officer pursuing the boy on foot.
The officers jumped in to help, at which point the 12-year-old allegedly spit in one officer’s face “multiple times,” the SPD said in a statement, according to The Sacramento Bee.
The boy demanded to know why police wanted to talk to him, then attempted to fight off their efforts to place him into handcuffs, bodycam footage showed.
“What is I’m under arrest for?” he asked the officers repeatedly, as they told him to calm down. “What’d I do yeah? Tell me that!”
The boy began complaining about his handcuffs while the officers tried to get more information about what had led to the foot chase.
“This s--t is tight!” he yelled. “Alright watch out though. Let me go!”
The officers calmly told the agitated boy to calm down and relax.
Meanwhile, the security officer explained that he was “notorious” for shoplifting in the area.
“You know that’s a god d--n lie!” the boy retorted. “Man, what the f--k?”
The 12-year-old said he had done nothing wrong, and that the security officer just began “chasing” him.
Bystanders then barged into the scene and demanded to know what was going on, which appeared to bolster the agitated teen’s defiant attitude further, the video showed.
The bystanders repeatedly accosted the police for “doing this to a little -ss kid,” and the boy again yelled at the officers to let him go.
“My parents should be here! What you doin’?” he said, just before he spit at one of the officers.
“That’s f--kin' it,” the officer said. “He just spit on me.”
“That’s it? Yeah, I spit on y’all b---hes!” the boy retorted.
The pre-teen began fighting the officers’ efforts to get him into the back of a patrol vehicle, as at least one of the bystanders began yelling at them.
The boy continued to hurl expletives at the police as they wrestled him to the ground, and allegedly spit on them two more times, The Sacramento Bee reported.
“F--kin' racist -ss b---hes! Police brutality, b---h! You ain’t got no right to be doing this s--t,” he snarled, just before police placed a spit mask over his head.
“That escalated. That did not need to go this way,” one officer commented.
The boy began yelling that he couldn’t “f--kin' breathe,” at which point the officers brought him to a sitting position.
“Get this bag off my head!” he shouted repeatedly. “Let me go, or I will kick your b---h -ss.”
The officers managed to place the irate boy into the patrol vehicle, and tried to tell his upset mother what had transpired.
“I didn’t want to do that,” the officer said, according to The Sacramento Bee. “I’m actually really upset that this happened because he’s a young child. The last thing we would want is to hurt a child.”
The boy was cited on charges of battery against a police officer and resisting arrest, and was ultimately released to his mother, KCRA reported.
On Tuesday, the family’s attorney, Mark Harris, said he plans to file lawsuits over the belligerent child’s arrest, according to The Sacramento Bee.
"He was no longer a threat in any way,” Harris told KCRA. “He was constrained with his arms behind his back in handcuffs and there was no spitting going on whatsoever, so clearly to me it was an effort to intimidate him, to punish him, to humiliate him.”
Harris also claimed that, even if the boy did spit in the officer’s face, it was not necessarily a health hazard, KTLA reported.
“The officer should have de-escalated the hostilities,” the lawyer declared. “They immediately used force to try to detain the young man. It went very quickly to hand around the neck, hands around the arm.”
Harris claimed that the pre-teen hadn’t done anything to lead to him being confronted by the security officer in the first place.
“All of this for a 12-year-old who, at worst, was accused of asking people for money, which he wasn’t doing,” he said.
You can watch the officers’ encounter with the irate boy in the video below: