The victim has still not been told where her car is, which means that it, and the baby’s hearing aid that was left in it, are “gone with the wind”.
Philadelphia police pulled a woman from an SUV during unrest in West Philadelphia Tuesday morning, beat and bloodied her, separated her from her toddler for hours, and kept her in handcuffs in the hospital, her attorneys said Friday.
She has not been charged with a crime, and police won’t say what prompted the show of force.
Philadelphia civil rights attorneys Kevin Mincey and Riley H. Ross III are representing the woman and the toddler, who they said were both injured as police pulled them from an SUV shown in a now-viral video from the 5200 block of Chestnut Street at about 2 a.m. Tuesday. The video depicts at least 15 police officers swarming a vehicle, bashing in the windows, pulling out the driver and another passenger, beating them, then appearing to remove a child from the backseat.
Mincey said Young was struggling to get her child to fall asleep, and, hoping a car ride would help, she took the toddler with her to West Philadelphia to pick up her 16-year-old nephew from a friend’s house as unrest roiled the neighborhood. Mincey said Young encountered police barricades and attempted to make a three-point turn when police surrounded the vehicle.
Then, he said, police pulled Young and the 16-year-old from the car and threw them to the ground; police beat both with batons, handcuffed them, and detained them, he said. Mincey said Young relayed that police at the scene refused to tell her where her child would be taken, saying only “he’s gonna go to a better place, we’re gonna report it to DHS,” presumably referring to the Department of Human Services, the city’s child-welfare agency.
Police then took her back to headquarters and processed her. Mincey said she was kept in a holding cell, wasn’t informed of charges against her, and was issued a wristband that read: “assault on police.” She was released without being charged. Mincey said she’s unsure what time she was released, but she said “the sun was up.”
Young and her son were separated for hours. Mincey said Young was in the police van with another woman who had a cell phone. Young called her mother, Mincey said, and the boy’s grandmother went to the scene to retrieve the child. There, according to Mincey, police directed her to go to 15th Street and John F. Kennedy Boulevard, four miles away in Center City. The grandmother, Mincey said, found the child sitting in his car seat in a police cruiser with two officers. The child had a lump on his head and glass from the SUV’s broken windows was still in his car seat, Mincey said.
Video shows Philadelphia Police breaking into an SUV in West Philly early Tuesday morning, and then beating the driver while a child was inside.
Mincey said police have not told the family where their vehicle is, and he said the child’s hearing aid and Young’s purse and wallet are still inside it.
Ross also slammed the National Fraternal Order of Police for on Thursday posting images of an officer holding the child and falsely writing in a caption: “This child was lost during the violent riots in Philadelphia, wandering around barefoot in an area that was experiencing complete lawlessness. The only thing this Philadelphia police officer cared about in that moment was protecting this child.”
The child was the same one pulled from the SUV, according to images shot at the scene by an Inquirer photographer and a freelance photographer in the area. The Inquirer is not publishing images of the toddler out of concern for the privacy of the family and the child.
The FOP deleted the posts about 30 minutes after the Inquirer asked for comment. On Friday, an FOP spokesperson said after posting the photo, the organization “subsequently learned of conflicting accounts of the circumstances under which the child came to be assisted by the officer and immediately took the photo and caption down.”
The video of the incident was shot less than 12 hours after two Philadelphia police officers shot and killed Walter Wallace Jr., a 27-year-old Black man who family and neighbors said was experiencing a mental health crisis. Video of his killing showed him holding a knife and walking toward police when they opened fire, each firing seven shots.
Seriously, the cops are completely out of control.