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Video Shows Maryland Police Berating And Handcuffing Crying 5-Year-Old And Encouraging Beatings
Video released by the Montgomery County Police department shows officers Dionne Holliday and Kevin Christmon berating a 5-year-old boy and expressing that he should be beaten.
Footage released last week from an incident earlier this year shows police officers in Maryland handcuffing a 5-year-old boy and advocating for children to be beaten.
Montgomery County Police released a video on Friday which shows two officers detaining a 5-year-old boy in January 2020 after he walked away from East Silver Spring Elementary School in Silver Spring. The boy left school premises after apparently throwing a basketball at a teacher, local outlet WTOP reported.
The video shows two officers — identified as Dionne Holliday and Kevin Christmon — approaching the boy on the street then referring to him as “bad” and berating him until he is placed in the back of a patrol car. The child is sobbing throughout the incident.
At one point, Christmon asks if the child has special needs before continuing to berate him.
The two officers then took the boy back to the school, where he continues to cry while being scolded. When the boy’s mother arrives, the police officers encourage her to beat the boy.
“I don’t like bad, disrespectful children, I think they should be beaten and that’s what I told your momma,” Holliday says to the child. Shanta Grant, the boy's mother, tells the police that she wishes she could beat the child but fears the repercussions of child abuse.
The two cops also handcuff the child inside the school.
“When you get older, when you want to make your own decisions, you know what’s going to be your best friend?” Christmon tells the child, referencing the handcuffs. “These right here.”
County Councilmember Will Jawando said in a statement the video made him feel sick.
“Before our eyes, we watched a little boy be failed by every adult whose one purpose was to help him,” he said.
In a joint statement, Montgomery County Public Schools Superintendent Jack Smith and Board of Education President Brenda Wolff condemned the actions of the officers.
“There is no excuse for adults to ever speak to or threaten a child in this way,” they said.
Last week, the police department stated that a “thorough” internal investigation of the incident was conducted and that the findings are confidential. They noted that both officers involved “remain employed.”
The department said it will not be commenting further due to pending litigation.
Grant filed a lawsuit earlier this year.
“To not know how to talk with and treat a little kid—a 5-year-old that you encounter who is obviously having a bad day—and treat him like he just committed a distribution of narcotics with a firearm, there’s just no excuse for that,” James Papirmeister, one of the attorneys who represents Grant, told VICE.