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A family is outraged and demanding an apology from Arkansas police after one of their family members – grieving the recent loss of her young daughter – was handcuffed by police in a hotel parking lot.
Brookshire’s 4-year-old niece, Nia, was killed in a car crash over the weekend, and he and other family members gathered in Arkansas to support his sister.
“My sister needed some fresh air. She was having a really hard time and wanted to speak to some close friends who just couldn’t be by her side right now,” Richard Brookshire explained.
The situation quickly deteriorated even more, however, when Shawnda was approached by police officers, asking if she was a hotel guest and asking to see her room key.
Police say that Shawnda called a family member and said that police were trying to arrest her.
A verbal altercation ensued when an officer tells Shawnda that she’ll be going to jail for “disorderly.”
“Yeah and miss my daughter’s funeral because you want to lock me up while I’m walking in a parking lot,” Shawnda retorted.
Police say that Shawnda began screaming, and so they decided to handcuff her and put her in the police car to try and calm her down.
“We got the call from my sister and we ran down as quickly as we could and I come outside and I see a cop with my sister handcuffed on the ground with his knee on her back, and I scream, ‘Her daughter just died,'” Richard said.
Police meanwhile say that they were just trying to do their job, nothing that the hotel management had alerted police of break-ins in the area.
“They were on those hotel lots because hotel management is coming to use and saying we’re having an issue here. We’re having break-ins in our area. We’re having people travel through and want to make sure our property is safe,” Assistant Police Chief Robert Langston said.
“I understand she was under a great deal of stress and I have never been in the situation that she’s in. I can’t speak for her,” Langston added. “I can understand the stress that she was dealing with, and that the family was dealing with, but our officers don’t know that. They don’t know what the family is going through. We’re there to really to protect their property.”
Shawnda ended up being released with no charges. Police also insisted that officers didn’t violate any department policies and will not be facing any discipline in the incident.