A young girl in Grand Rapids, Michigan, walked out of her home to go to the store when she came face-to-face with the police officers who were looking for a stabbing suspect.
Although her mother was present at the scene, the cops proceeded to point a gun at 11-year-old Honestie Hodge, told her to raise her hands and walk backwards to the wall, patted her down, placed her in handcuffs and then threw her in the back of a police cruiser.
Both Honestie and her mother, Whitney, are of African-American descent, whereas the person cops were reportedly looking for was white.
“It made me feel scared and it made me feel like I did something wrong,” the little girl told WOOD-TV.
The body cam footage of the arrest showed Honestie sitting in the back of the car, screaming, “Please don’t let them take me” as she banged at the window, according to the reports. The police detained two more women, who were unarmed, who exited the house.
However, they were later released.
“I’m afraid to open or go near my back door ... because of what happened,” Honestie said. “I wanted to be a detective or police officer, but now I don’t want anything to do with those kind of things.”
Grand Rapids police said the officers were searching for the girl’s aunt, Carrie Manning, who was allegedly involved in a domestic stabbing a few blocks away from the Hodge residence. The cops believed the 40-year-old, who was later arrested, was armed.
Meanwhile, the local authorities have called Honestie’s arrest “inappropriate.”
“The screams of the 11-year-old, they go to your heart,” Police Chief David Rahinsky said of the body cam video. “You hear the mother yelling from the steps, ‘That’s my child!’ That’s our community’s child. That’s someone who lives in Grand Rapids. That’s someone who should feel safe running to an officer.”
The Grand Rapids Police Department also issued a statement.
“Once on scene, officers determined that the suspect fled the residence still armed with the knife, Their investigation led to a second Westside Grand Rapids home where it was believed the suspect may have fled to,” it read. “As officers were setting up a perimeter, three females simultaneously exited the home, two adults and one 11-year-old juvenile. Until it could be determined that the individuals were not the suspect, nor armed with a weapon, the three were ordered back to officers and detained. The homeowner gave consent to search the home, and it was deemed that none of the three individuals that exited the home were the suspect officers were searching for nor was the suspect in the home. The females were subsequently released.”
It is unclear how the officers mistook an 11-year-old African-American girl for a grown white woman.
The officials opened an internal investigation after the Hodges filed a complaint.
Thumbnail/Banner Credits: Pexels, Tookapic