Tuesday, June 22, 2021

‘You Did It to Yourself, Hon’: New Video of Girl Who Was Pepper Sprayed Released

Rochester Police
Rochester Police handcuff and pepper spray 9-year-old Black girl

*The 9-year-old Black girl who had been handcuffed and pepper sprayed by Rochester police is seen in newly-released bodycam video screaming in agony for 16 minutes in the back of the squad car.

“Officer, please don’t do this to me,” she begs at one point as she sought relief from the pepper spray, which she said was burning her eyes.

“You did it to yourself, hon,” a white female officer responds.

City officials suspended the police officers who were seen in the initial video released Sunday spraying the face of the handcuffed child. In the newly released body-cam footage, the girl can be heard sobbing, asking for her father and begging for relief from the pepper spray. The white female officer tells her that paramedics will come and wash out her eyes, but the ambulance has been delayed by the snowy roads.

Watch the newly released footage below, or scroll down farther to watch all 90 minutes of newly released footage.

The girl’s mother called police during an argument with her spouse, but asked officers to call mental-health services when it became clear her fourth-grade daughter was headed for a meltdown. Previously released video shows officers restraining the screaming girl, telling her they are losing patience as they struggled in the snow to put her in the back of the police cruiser.

About ninety minutes of body camera footage in total were released Thursday by city officials. They include camera footage from multiple officers and shows events leading up to and following the Harris Street incident.

Watch the unedited video in its entirety below:

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