Video on social media prompts release of police body cam footage - FOX Carolina 21

Video on social media prompts release of police body cam footage after child caught with BB gun in Spartanburg

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Screenshot from body cam footage released by Spartanburg Police Department  (Source: Spartanburg PD) Screenshot from body cam footage released by Spartanburg Police Department (Source: Spartanburg PD)

After bystander video of an incident involving law enforcement and two juveniles was posted on social media, Spartanburg police responded by releasing body cam footage.

Police said in an official release that they were dispatched to a call involving juveniles in possession of a BB gun and throwing rocks on June 29. The caller told dispatchers that the child with the BB gun had used it earlier to shoot her son in the buttocks, and said children had thrown rocks at her house and vehicle.

In the body cam footage, an officer exits his vehicle upon observing a child with a BB gun, and instructs him to drop it, to which the child complied. Another child was riding a bicycle up and down the street.

The officer then detained the child in handcuffs and seated him in the back of the patrol car while he went on to search for the boy's parents and gather more details.

A bystander recorded a video that was posted to social media, alleging the officer drew and pointed his weapon at one of the children, however, police said the officer's body cam footage shows that the officer never un-holstered or presented his weapon during the incident.

Police said the families of both children involved in the incident have given different accounts of the events that transpired that day.

The footage shows that the detained child and his mother were allowed to go home after the officer gathered information from a neighbor.

Police also released a recording of the 911 call made by a neighbor who called in the incident.

Spartanburg police also shared that their policies based on case law do not prohibit the handcuffing of juveniles or any individuals identified as suspects in the initial phases of a police investigation.

The department said they released the entire recording from the officer's body cam "in the interest of transparency" and to correct some of the misinformation that has been shared.

Police said the social media video post shared by the bystander online included the following statement:

Very disturbing video. This happened in Spartanburg SC. We were told that this 11 year old boy was playing outside, throwing rocks when the police pulled up with guns drawn. He was eventually handcuffed behind his back and put into a patrol car. This little boy makes good grades, plays basketball, football, baseball and runs track. He also has been a participant in the Omega Camp for four years in a row.

Our question for Spartanburg City Police Office is....does your policing policy include pulling out guns on and handcuffing 11 year old kids??? And yes, we saw the lady pick up the orange tip  toy gun from the grass...we were told he was handcuffed because of rocks that were thrown...not because of a very obvious toy gun.

Stay with FOX Carolina for the latest on this developing story.

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