The Montgomery County Department of Police has launched an investigation after body camera footage captured a White female officer using the N-word while investigating four Black men in Silver Spring, Maryland. On Thursday, the police department released the 12-minute-long footage on YouTube.
Several police officers were responding to a trespassing call at a local McDonald’s on May 5. During the investigation, the officer in question told the men that the presence of more officers would help speed up the process. “You wanna get out of here fast, right? Y’all n******s been trying to something,” she said.
When one of the men, who was recording footage of the incident on his cell phone, called the officer out for using the racial slur, she said, “No, those were your words.”
The same man told the officer that she’d still use offensive language even if she “didn’t have that [police] badge on.” Once again, she claimed to have been repeating a “direct quote.” After laughing, the officer said, “I would still say it because I was repeating your words.”
The Montgomery County Department of Police said it “takes all allegations of racial discrimination seriously,” in a press release issued the same day the footage was shared online.
“The matter brought to our attention today is disturbing and contrary to our department’s values and our overarching mission to fairly and impartially serve our community. The statements observed on the social media video clip are contrary to our extensive training curriculum that include implicit bias training and other training programs to ensure fair, unbiased, and non-discriminatory policing in our community,” the statement continued.
Offering apologies on behalf of the offensive language used in the video, the statement concluded, “We sincerely regret the disturbing nature of this video. We understand the pain such language causes the entire community. Our commitment to having open and honest communication with the community and providing transparent police service persists. As part of our commitment to accountability and transparency, we are releasing both the social media video and the body worn camera footage of the involved officer for all to view.”
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Jasmine Washington is a beauty-obsessed journalist by day and a trap music connoisseur by night. A lifelong New Yorker, she got her start as an intern at the now-defunct Juicy Magazine. Jasmine joined the EBONY.com team as a writer, penning daily stories on all things Black culture and entertainment.