New York City police officers violently yanked a one-year-old toddler from his mother, Jazmine Headley, at a Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program office in Brooklyn on Dec. 7.
Headley had sat on the floor because there were no available chairs, and another person called police after the 23-year-old mom argued with a security guard, notes the New York Post.
Nyashia Ferguson began to film as four officers, three of them women, surround Headley and her baby.
Headley shouted, “They’re hurting my son! They’re hurting my son!” as one of the female officers violently yanks the child from his mother’s arms. The cop also waved a Taser at onlookers, including several children.
The New York Police Department said officers had responded to a 911 call for harassment after security guards said Headley refused to leave.
Police said Headley had refused to leave and was endangering her child, whom police ripped from her arms.
Headley was charged with resisting arrest, acting in a manner injurious to a child, obstructing governmental administration and trespassing.
Headley is still being held without bond, for a warrant of credit card fraud, at Rikers Island, which has a history of human rights violation.
Ferguson, who filmed the incident and posted video on social media, told the New York Times:
They’re always rude. They think that people that are poor don’t have nothing, so you can treat them any kind of way.
Ferguson said Headley had been sitting on the floor for two hours as she waited for assistance in the crowded office, and that security guards taunted Headley after she complained about the wait.
Letitia James, the city’s city’s public advocate and state’s attorney general-elect:
No mother should have to experience the trauma and humiliation we all witnessed in this video. Being poor is not a crime.