The mother of the 9-year-old girl who was handcuffed and pepper-sprayed by a Rochester police officer on Jan. 29 plans to sue the city of Rochester and the police department. According to the Democrat & Chronicle, the mother filed a notice of claim against the city and police department Tuesday.
The incident happened after the woman called 911 to a home Friday afternoon for “family trouble,” which reportedly involved a potentially stolen vehicle. While officers were responding to the call, approached by the custodial parent the child, who told the officer she feared her daughter would harm herself and others.
The two police body-cam videos that were released Sunday morning show a nearly 10-minute struggle involving a 9-year-old girl and Rochester Police officers. The disturbing video shows the young girl being detained, handcuffed and put in the back of a Rochester Police Department patrol car, and pepper-sprayed after defying commands to put her feet in the car.
Caution: Video may be disturbing to viewers.
According to Mike Mazzeo, the president of the union representing uniformed officers, Rochester Police Locust Club, said the officer “made a decision that he thought was the best action to take.”
Police announced an internal investigation, but haven’t said if any of the involved officers have been suspended. The child was treated at a hospital and released to her family. New York State Attorney General Letitia James said her office will be looking into the incident that transpired, which she called “deeply disturbing and wholly unacceptable”.