TEHRAN (Press Shia Agency) – Video circulated on social media has resulted in mounting concerns after a toddler was shown walking barefoot out of a pick-up truck with her hands up over her head toward the Tallahassee Police officers with their guns drawn.
Tallahassee Police Department released two body camera videos afterward in response Friday evening that provide a fuller picture of the incident. It shows the officers talking with adults and working to get the toddler and an infant who were in the cab safely away from the vehicle.
A passerby’s video of Tallahassee Police making a shoplifting arrest Thursday showed a toddler climbing out the driver's side door of a pick-up truck and walking barefoot with her hands up over her head toward officers with their guns drawn, USA Today reported.
While people in the video said the police were "holding the gun at the baby,” body camera footage shows officers lowering their weapons as they take a man into custody in the parking lot of the Bealls store on Capital Circle Northeast.
Chad M. Bom and James W. McMullen were arrested in the parking lot of the Bealls on Capital Circle Northeast on shoplifting charges. Store employees reported the theft and said one of the suspects had a gun in his waistband.
The officer tries to coax the girl to come to him, and her mother who was on the scene, and allows the man to join in an attempt to get her away from the pickup truck.
A second video shows an officer and the children’s mother retrieving an infant from the back cab of the truck.
“The body camera footage shows the officers’ concern for the children and their compassion as they permitted the mother to care for the children,” Tallahassee Police Chief Michael DeLeo said. “The mom, who is a suspect, asks an officer to hold her 2-year-old as she retrieves the infant from a car seat.”
A gun was found in the back seat during a search of the truck, but it was a pellet gun, DeLeo said.
The videos show that there are different perspectives of an incident that caused concern among citizens, he added, and “justify the investment in body-worn cameras, the importance of all the facts and the professionalism of your officers."