Pregnant Woman Slammed to the Ground by Police
One mother is speaking out after Barstow, CA police, who maintain she “actively resisted arrest,” forced her to the ground during her third trimester of pregnancy.
The incident occurred back in January when Charlena Michelle Cooks got involved in an argument with a school employee after dropping off her second-grade daughter.
Things quickly escalated when officers were called to the scene and one asked Cooks for her ID. Although the cop said he would give her two minutes to use her phone to confirm he had the right to do so, he and another officer slammed her to the ground, belly first, less than a minute into her call.
The altercation, captured on video thanks to the officer’s body camera, has since gone viral.
Now Cooks is speaking out. She told CNN that the law enforcement “broke” her.
“You make me feel like a way that I am not,” she said tearfully. “This is not an issue I wanted. I was just dropping my daughter off at school.”
Cooks, whose charge for resisting a peace officer was dismissed, is planning to file a lawsuit. She believes the encounter was racially charged and the police used too much force.
Barstow city officials disagree.
“This incident was in no way racially motivated, as implied by the ACLU [American Civil Liberties Union],” the city said in a statement. “Barstow is a racially diverse community, as is our Police Department, and we affirm our Police Department’s commitment to protect and serve all of our residents.”
Cooks gave birth to another girl in March. She said the baby appears to be healthy, but she is carefully monitoring her growth.