MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A smartphone appears to have captured a Minneapolis police officer threatening a teenager.
Seventeen-year-old Faysal Mohamed says the video — recorded on March 18 — shows an officer talking to his friend after they were pulled over.
You hear what sounds like a threat coming from a police officer, directed at a teenager.
“Plain and simple, if you f*** with me I’m going to break your leg before you even get a chance to run. Be honest. I don’t screw around,” the officer said.
Mohamed’s friend calmly asks the officer, “Who said I was going to run?”
“I’m just giving you a heads up. I’m trying to be Officer Friendly right now,” the officer said.
Mohamed says he and three other friends had just left a YMCA in south Minneapolis when police pulled over their car. He said they were told to get out and were put in handcuffs.
When Mohamed’s friend asks the officer why he is being arrested, the officer replies, “Because I feel like arresting you.”
Mohamed says police held them for 45 minutes while they searched their car and did background checks.
Officers later told them they were suspected of stealing a car, but all four were let go without being arrested.
“You have to practice those words that you are going to use in a situation where you are under stress,” former police officer Mylan Masson said.
She teaches law enforcement at Hennepin Technical College. She says the officer should not have threatened the teenager.
“It’s a threat … it’s an illegal, you know, you can’t threaten people. And the other thing is you can’t break legs. It’s not part of the Constitution and it’s not part of the laws that we have,” Masson said.
But Masson says the officer can’t be judged based on a 30-second cellphone clip.
“There’s always something more going on that we don’t know about on either end. We don’t know … how the officer is reacting, what the officer’s seen,” Masson said.
You never actually see the officer in the video, you just hear his voice.
In a statement, Minneapolis Police said the video is currently under investigation, and that complaints against officers are taken very seriously.
Mohamed told WCCO that he and his friends had been playing basketball at the YMCA before officers pulled them over. But the YMCA told us they don’t have any record of Mohamed being there that day.