An 11-year old girl who was allegedly shoplifting at a local grocery store had a taser gun deployed on her by a Cincinnati police officer. The girl had to be taken to the hospital following the incident. A “complete investigation” has been launched focusing on the officer’s alleged use of excessive force to the girl.
On Monday around 9:30 p.m., authorities say an off-duty officer, identified as 55-year old Kevin Brown, suspected a girl was shoplifting at a Kroger in Spring Grove Village, Cincinnati. She was allegedly putting groceries inside her backpack.
In the press release, authorities confirmed that when Brown approached the girl, she “ignored the Officer and continued to walk away.” That’s when Brown deployed the taser gun which hit her in the back.
The girl, a fifth grader who wasn’t identified due to her young age, was brought to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital for a check-up and was later on released into a guardian’s custody.
According to the guidelines, tasers can be used to apprehend those who are over 7 years old. Nonetheless, Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot Isaac launched an investigation.
“We are extremely concerned when force is used by one of our officers on a child of this age,” Isaac said in a statement. “As a result, we will be taking a very thorough review of our policies as it relates to using force on juveniles as well as the propriety of the officer’s actions.”
Vice Mayor Christopher Smitherman told the Cincinnati Enquirer that “it’s hard to understand why an 11-year-old would be tased,” and also called for a “complete investigation.”
Meanwhile, the girl was charged with theft and obstruction of justice. She is set to appear in Hamilton County Juvenile Court. Brown has been placed on restricted duty while waiting for the results of the investigation.