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Footage of US Police Arresting 8-Year-Old Over Bag of Chips Goes Viral, Causes Anger

Footage of US Police Arresting 8-Year-Old Over Bag of Chips Goes Viral, Causes Anger
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By Staff, Agencies

Footage of white US police officers in Syracuse, New York, forcing a crying Black boy into the back of their vehicle for stealing a bag of chips has caused anger.

In the video, published on Twitter on Monday and viewed more than 2.3 million times, a white male cop is seen holding a Black child’s arms behind his back. As the boy cries loudly, the cop puts him into the back of a police car as two other officers look on.

“What is y’all doing?” repeatedly asks a bystander. “He looks like a baby to me.”

“He’s stealing stuff,” answers one of the cops.

“I’ll pay for it,” the man responds. “Leave him alone.”

The boy was accused of stealing from a store and was taken home by the police, the Syracuse Police Department later said in a statement. “The boy was not placed in handcuffs and no charges were filed.”

Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh, who asked police to review the bodycam footage, said one of the officers involved in the incident knew the boy from prior interactions.

“When the online video was first shared with me on Monday, I was concerned,” Walsh said. “What occurred demonstrates the continuing need for the City to provide support to our children and families and to invest in alternative response options to assist our officers.”

The boy's father, Anthony Weah, told the Post-Standard after seeing the video that he wants to file a complaint against the officers.

“Why would the police treat that child like that?” Weah said. “Over a $3 bag of chips.”

Kenneth Jackson, who recorded the footage of the incident said, “I felt his terror and decided to intervene. There’s a way that the police need to interact with kids, and what they did that day was completely unacceptable.”

Reports show that each year US police hurts thousands of teens, most of them black girls.