A police patrol unit followed the couple's auto, and once the family pulled into their babysitter's apartment complex, an officer approached the vehicle with his gun drawn and yanked open the front door, the claim said. The woman, Harper, is heard crying and pleading with the officers that she's pregnant, and that she can't put her hands up because she's holding her baby.
Phoenix police spokesperson Tommy Thompson told ABC15 that both officers (the one who pointed a gun at Harper and her children, and Officer Meyer) are still working but are on "non-enforcement assignments". Police said they were made aware of video on June 11.
At one point in the witness video, Meyer can be heard yelling "I'm gonna f***ing put a cap right in your f***ing head". "He told her to put the baby on the ground, which she was unwilling to do because the baby could not walk, and the ground consisted of hot pavement", the notice read.
"You're going to f-- get shot!" the officer shouts back.
At a news conference held this week, Harper said she tried to explain to officers that she was in the backseat with her kids and couldn't immediately remove herself from her vehicle. The affiliate reported that police said there were other stolen items in the vehicle besides the doll. They said the incident occurred May 29, though police contend it happened on May 27.
The Family Dollar Store declined to press charges after the doll was returned. Police are heard shouting at them to get out of the vehicle, while the woman is saying that the door by her seat does not open because it is stuck.
Video of the encounter near 36th and Roosevelt streets show several Phoenix police officers, some with guns drawn, surrounding the auto of Ames, his pregnant fiancée, Iesha Harper, and their two young children.
Once Harper exited the auto with their children, the officer lowered then holstered his weapon.
The man was cuffed while being held to the ground by an officer, then lifted and shoved into a police auto. Phoenix PD says they are investigating the allegations of misconduct, but the family has lawyered up and announced their intention to file a $10 million claim agains the department.
Harper, who was five months pregnant at the time, said she was terrified. "I gave commands to Iesha to raise her hands in the air".
Ames told New Times the only thing that was "stolen" was the doll his daughter walked out with. In his notice, he says the officers committed battery and unlawful imprisonment, among others, and both the police department and city are liable because of "inadequate policies, training, supervision".
"We're talking about a little doll that's worth maybe $5 and the horrors that came from the overreaction to that", former Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne, who is representing the family.
An officer is seen attempting to yank the child from her arms before a bystander offers to take her children.
In the police report, officers allege the four-year-old girl's aunt was also shoplifting.
Footage of the incident spread quickly online and sparked backlash, with dozens of people, including a few state lawmakers, criticizing the department for having officers on the force as irrationally aggressive as the ones seen in the video.
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