Tulsa, OK – Police have released bodycam footage that shows a Tulsa woman who accused the police of harassing a group of girls sitting in a car because they were black had made up the details of the story (video below).
Rochelle Wilson posted an emoji-filled rant to Facebook at 9:45 a.m. on June 17 that accused Tulsa police of having racially-profiled and harassed a car full of teenage girls.
“4 police officers surrounded my daughter, my [niece] and 2 of her friends as they sat in the car IN front of my home!” Wilson began. “They went to workout this morning & was just chilling. They roll up and ask whose car is this? Then they call for additional cars.”
“My daughter told them she lived here,” she continued. “They continued to ask questions? Where are you coming from? Did you kick any trash cans over in the neighborhood? They didn’t believe that she lived here! Then told her if she really lives here have her mom come outside!”
“What if I wasn’t home? What if he THOUGHT she reached for something other than a cell phone. She calls me like MOM come out the police are here. I get out there & he wants me to verify I live here. I suggest you play that game with another person who is unaware of their rights!” the mother wrote.
“I ask what did they do? Nothing. Was the music loud? NO. Then why all these police for 4 girls sitting in a car in front of their home? Ma’am we got a report it was a group of black boys sitting in a car. Well # 1 when you pulled up you saw they were teenage girls & # 2 when did sitting in a car being black become a need for 4 police officers to surround a car,” Wilson complained, alleging the officer’s contact with her daughter was racially-motivated.
“I’m beyond frustrated but thankful I was home because these young ladies who have never done ANYTHING would have been subjected to who knows what because they were black sitting in a car at 9:30 am in the morning,” she ended her rant.
The inflammatory post, which included pictures of the teen girls and the police cars parked in front of the house, quickly went viral and stirred controversy in the community.
The aunt of one of the other girls in the car posted a similarly angry message to Facebook and tagged the Tulsa police.
“PLEASE READ POST BELOW! Wtf Tulsa Police Department? This is my two nieces and this happened at 9:30 in the morning.Who rolls up and says who’s car is this? How is that your leading question! Or why didn’t you just ask her for ID? That clearly has her address on it. Listen and I want everyone to listen we are coming up on 2020 it’s time for this bullshit of racially profiling to stop especially if your a cop,” the aunt wrote.
When Tulsa police officials became aware of the accusations, they quickly investigated and pulled up the officers’ bodycam video from the interaction with the teenage girls and Wilson.
In response to the allegations, Tulsa PD posted a statement and video on the department’s official Facebook page.
It explained that the incident occurred after Tulsa police received a report of three juvenile boys sitting in a red Chevy Impala on a residential street at about 9:07 a.m. on June 17.
The caller told police that some trash cans had been moved around the house as if they were going to be used to do something nefarious.
Bodycam video showed police responded to the call and found three teenage girls sitting in a car parked at the curb.
One of the girls told the officer she lived at the house they were parked in front of, and then Wilson came out of the house through the garage.
The officer approached and told her what he was checking on.
“Someone called in. I guess they were concerned about them just hanging out in a car,” he explained.
“That’s my daughter and my niece,” Wilson said.
She confirmed that the girls belonged there and the officer took his leave, the video showed.
“See you guys,” he told her in a friendly voice.
Then he called out to say goodbye to the girls who were still sitting in the car, the video showed.
“Alright girls, thanks!” the officer yelled. One of the girls can be seen waving goodbye to the officer from inside the car.
Bodycam video showed that the entire exchange was polite and friendly, and when Wilson said goodbye to the officer, she was laughing and smiling.
The video showed that Wilson’s story was a complete contradiction of what actually happened during the interaction between the officer, the girls, and the mother.
“After these posts were made, both of the original parties who made the posts gave a public statement to Tulsa City Council during a listening session in advance of the upcoming Equality Indicators meeting regarding juvenile arrests,” Tulsa PD said in their statement beneath the video.
The police department said it had shared the bodycam in response to the overwhelming amount of negative feedback they had received after Wilson’s post went viral.
Wilson has since made her Facebook page private.
Watch the bodycam of what actually happened below: