Last week, a number of police officers in Atlanta gained national attention after a video surfaced showing them man-handling two college students. Messiah Young, 22, was behind the wheel of a vehicle with Teniyah Pilgrim, 20, sitting the passenger seat. They were reportedly out past the allocated city-wide curfew, and in the video, cops can be seen surrounding the car, breaking the driver’s side window, tasing both students, and using what some consider to be unnecessary excessive force. Young also claimed he was punched as much as 10 times during the incident and Pilgrim can be heard screaming in the clip.
Later, six officers were charged with aggravated assault, and it’s being reported the two of the cops who were fired from the force due to the incident, Ivory Streeter and Mark Gardner, have filed lawsuits. CBS News reports that the lawsuit states the officers “were involved in a use of force incident that arose within the scope and course of their duties.” The officers also accused the City of Atlanta of “failure of due process” before firing them from their positions.
“Way too quick they had no due process,” said Vince Champion, southeast director of the International Brotherhood of Police Officers. “Knee-jerk-reaction that the mayor and the chief made for their own political reasons.”