Chris Williams, a Detroit black police officer , says he was manhandled and handcuffed by a young fellow officer who is white, apparently for having too much money in his possession. The police department is currently doing an investigation on the incident that Williams considers a case of racial profiling.
Williams said the incident happened when he was fulfilling yearly requirements for police officers while he was dressed in plain clothes at the Detroit Police Department Training Center. Suddenly, a white officer approached him and questioned him about the money he saw him putting in his pocket while in the bathroom, few minutes before that.
“He was yelling,” Williams told Fox 2 Detroit. “I look back and he’s running, and I’m like we must have forgotten to sign out. I am walking back and he grabbed my wrist, with his hand around me. He yelled, ‘Come on’ and I said what are you doing. I didn’t know what was going on until he put me in cuffs.”
Williams, a 15-year veteran on the force, said he was embarassed and humiliated as it all happened in front of other police at the training center. Williams said, “I was confused. He’s like, ‘You’re not supposed to have this much money on you.’”
Apparently, the $5,000 cash was from his girlfriend, a fellow officer who was also at the training center at that time. She had him hold onto the some of the money that she got after just sold her house and she will use it to pay off household and medical bills. She de-escalated the situation with the white police officer by showing him the bank statement that proved the large bank withdrawal.
However, the damage has already been done. Williams is planning to take legal actions and hired attorney Todd Perkins, who demands the Detroit police to take action.
“This is how he was treated by an individual who has only 20 percent of time on the job this man has,” Perkins said. “He throws him up against the fence, without probably cause, and places him in handcuffs. How dare he. In 2019 that should make you afraid. This is an individual who is policing the streets of a predominately African-American city, he should not be on the streets.”
Meanwhile, Assistant Police Chief James White said in a statement that what the white police officer did is “not unreasonable” and he would reserve his judgement whether or not it involves racial profiling. The incident is now under an internal investigation.