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Philadelphia cops temporarily detained a Black student as he was waiting with his friends for the bus back home on Thursday. A viral video of the incident shows a white police officer mocking the boy.
Asia Wilkerson, 16, recorded the incident on her phone and shared videos on her Instagram and Twitter over the weekend.
Instagram is helping this get out, but it needs more attraction. This Happened in Philadelphia,Pa on Thursday. A group of school kids and I were waiting for the bus at the bus stop when a cop car came to us, slowed down and stared at us then kept going down the street. pic.twitter.com/OrvOvWf3Oh— Asia 👑💕 (@Asiaaaaaaaaaaa_) September 14, 2019
According to her post, Wilkerson was waiting for the bus after school when a cop car pulled up, waited for a bit, then left. The same police officer returned with backup and detained the boy, who wasn’t wearing a shirt.
Asia Wilkerson’s mother, Monique Wilkerson, told the Daily Dot that the boy is a ninth-grader who goes to the same school as her daughter.
Asia Wilkerson wrote in her tweets it was really hot that day, and the boy wasn’t wearing a shirt. It reached 88 degrees in Philadelphia on Thursday, according to AccuWeather.
“Our school is down the street from the bus stop,” Wilkerson wrote in follow-up tweets. “I personally was with the young boy the entire walk to the bus stop and I’m saying this to tell you he did not…Do anything. I was with him the ENTIRE time, then the cop pulls up on us.”
In the first video posted by Asia, three police officers are seen escorting a Black shirtless boy into the car. “Sit all the way in,” a male cop says as the boy, who is compliant, is made to sit inside the car.
While other kids try to ask questions, a female officer motions them to stand back and tells them to “back up.”
The boy inside the car is heard asking something, and the male officer yells at him to “sit in the car!” The officer then closes the car door and faces the camera.
“Where you guys going?” he asks. Wilkerson and others are heard saying they’re on their way home. The officer asks them to start walking and Wilkerson responds, “No, the bus stop right here.”
When the officer walks up closer to Wilkerson, she zooms in on his badge number and says, “Look at the badge number.”
“Yeah, didn’t do anything wrong, right?” the officer responds, before walking away to other kids around. In the second video, the officer emerges out of the car and asks, “Who’s waiting for the 3?”
“Me,” Wilkerson responds from behind the camera, while another kid responds, “all of us.”
When the bus arrives, the officer asks if the students will get on the bus. They said they wouldn’t leave until the boy was released.
The officer lets him out. He laughs as the boy dashes out of the car. “Tell ‘em the reason I stopped you,” the officer says. “Remember you were shaking in the police car.”
The Philadelphia Police Department did not immediately respond to the Daily Dot’s request for comments. When contacted by phone, the Philadelphia Police Administration was unaware of the incident.
Monique Wilkerson says the police department responded to her and suggested she file a complaint. She says she plans to file a report for harassment.
“I was heated, I was hot, this is my daughter, she is 16 years old, she wasn’t doing anything wrong,” she told the Daily Dot on Monday. “And you… try to use your masculinity, use your privilege as a police officer and as a man to sit there and try to belittle my little girl.
“My child should be able to go to school and come home and sleep without feeling like she’s being harassed,” she said.
Samira Sadeque is a New York-based journalist reporting on immigration, sexual violence, and mental health, and will sometimes write about memes and dinosaurs too. Her work also appears in Reuters, NPR, and NBC among other publications. She graduated from Columbia Journalism School, and her work has been nominated for SAJA awards. Follow: @Samideque