The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Colorado is representing two African-American men who were recently stopped and detained by police in an case of what the ACLU calls blatant racial profiling. And they have the encounter on video.
In the video, Ryan Brown and his brother, Benjamin Brown, are seen being placed in handcuffs on March 25 of this year. The incident occurred in Colorado Springs.
The ACLU alleges the encounter with the police took place within a block of the brothers’ home and that police stopped the Browns over a cracked windshield.
I can only speak for myself on this one, but I’ve had a cracked windshield before, and no police officers pulled me over to inquire as to how it happened or when I planned to have it fixed. Then again, I’m white.
Benjamin Brown was ordered to exit his car at Taser-point, handcuffed, searched, held in the back of a police car, and finally issued a citation for an “obstructed view.”
His brother, Ryan, was dragged from the car, held at gunpoint, and faces a criminal charge for “interfering with official police duties.”
To which I have to say, Are you freaking kidding me?!
ACLU of Colorado Legal Director Mark Silverstein said what we have all long suspected about some of the police officers in this country:
“What Ryan and Benjamin Brown experienced at the hands of the Colorado Springs police is sadly all too familiar for young people of color. No reasonable person could watch the video recording of the traffic stop and say that two white men would have been treated the same way.”
In the video, Ryan Brown can be heard saying:
“I’m being perceived as a threat because we’re being pulled over for absolutely no reason. This is excessive force.”
The Colorado Springs Police Department has not responded to requests for comment on the incident.
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