Charges Dropped Against 11-Year-Old Girl Tased By Cincinnati Officer
Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley announced Wednesday that all charges were dropped against an 11-year-old girl who was tased in the back for allegedly stealing at a local Kroger. The charges included theft and obstruction of justice.
“Tasing an 11-year old who posed no danger to the police is wrong. I’m sorry for the harm to her and her family,” Cranley wrote in his statement obtained by WKRC. “This evening I called and asked Prosecutor Deters to drop charges against the girl. I’m happy to report that he did and I thank for him doing so.”
The young girl was at a Kroger on Monday when she was approached by an off-duty officer who suspected her of placing items in a backpack. According to police, the officer was working at Kroger as a security guard. Police claim the girl resisted and tried to run before the officer used his taser.
Cranley’s announcement comes as supporters of the young child inquire as to why an officer would use excessive force against a minor. According to the city’s policy, police are allowed to use tasers against anyone from age 7 to 70, if they are suspected of actively refusing arrest.
Donna Gowdy, the girl’s mother, wants the policy to be reviewed and revoked. In an interview with WKRC, Gowdy expressed outrage and disappointment in how her daughter was handled.
“I know everybody probably be like, ‘Well, you know, she stole,’ or whatever, but that’s not the issue at this point. The issue is that how he went about it,” Gowdy said.
Her daughter who is under 5 feet and weighs less than 100 pounds, should not have been a threat to an officer, Gowdy claims. According to a 2016 NBC News report, the popular law enforcement weapon emits on average 50,000 volts which can have damaging effects on the brain, and can even cause death. The 2013 death of Linwood Lambert transpired after he was tased by officers 20 times while his feet and hands were bound.
“I understand that the stealing and everything was wrong, but how he went about it, it didn’t have to happen, and two wrongs don’t make a right,” Gowdy said. She also said that she hopes her daughter learns from the incident.
Gowdy also said that Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot Isaac visited her home where he agreed with her stance. Gowdy demands that she be privy to all findings after the investigation is concluded.
“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.”