A video showing two police officers holding a 10-year-old boy on the ground has gone viral on Facebook, sparking an investigation into the conduct to determine if proper protocol was followed.
The incident in Georgia, which was first posted on Facebook by Ariel Collins, who says she is a cousin of the child, has been viewed more than 500,000 times and shared more than 14,000 times – though the clip on Facebook does not show the events leading up to the boy being pinned down.
After spreading across the internet, the Athens-Clarke County Police Department said they were reviewing the incident, and then provided footage from one of the officer’s body cameras.
“We have been made aware of a video that is making its way around social media involving two of our officers. We are reviewing the facts around this incident and will be publicly addressing the issue tomorrow,” the Athens-Clarke County Police Department wrote on Facebook on Monday, a day before the video was released.
“We ask that you remember we have made a promise of transparency to this community and have upheld that promise on multiple occasions.”
In the police video, the 10-year-old boy can be seen and heard in the background being restrained repeatedly by family as his father is being arrested.
The father repeatedly tells his son to calm down, but the boy remains upset and aggravated.
The police body cam then shows the young boy suddenly lunging at one of the police officers. In quick succession the boy is pushed against a police car bonnet, and then pinned to the ground with both hands behind his back.
The family members who had restrained the boy earlier in the video repeatedly shout at the officers to let the child go, and are repeatedly told to step away from the officers.
The officers then speak to the child, who apologises repeatedly on the ground before promising to behave. He is then let up by the officers.
Later, after a jump in the video, the child is brought to the police car to speak to his dad.