Video surfaces of forceful arrests of brothers in South Carolina

  • By cvbizz
  • June 26, 2021
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A video shot by a witness that shows police forcefully arresting two brothers has shaken a South Carolina community, which was bracing Friday for a third-consecutive night of protests. The tension in Rock Hill, a city about 25 miles south of Charlotte, North Carolina, was sparked by Wednesday’s arrest of Ricky Price, 35, and Travis Price, 32. The siblings, who are Black, are seen scuffling with Rock Hill police in a video posted by a bystander to Facebook, officials said. Police said Ricky Price violently resisted arrest. The brothers’ attorney, Justin Bamberg, said the elder Price suffered a broken nose during the arrest.“We understand people are mad,” Bamberg said Friday. “This is not just about what happened to Ricky and Travis, this is about a systemic issue. There are people in this country who, quite frankly, are tired of feeling that they’re the punching bag of law enforcement in America. That’s what this is about.”Rock Hill Police Chief Chris Watts said Thursday that two officers have been placed on leave, and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division would conduct an independent investigation. He did not provide the officers’ names. He said his department “recognizes the pain and frustration our community feels over this incident.”Some demonstrators this week threw rocks and bottles at officers in riot gear and set a small fire outside a building. Eleven were arrested Thursday, officials said. They could be charged with disorderly conduct, hindering police and being a pedestrian in a roadway, said city spokeswoman Katie Quinn. She said in an email Friday that more protests were expected, and the city’s police, who have an obligation to protect the community, will also “protect the First Amendment Right to Assemble.”Watts and Mayor John Gettys urged calm Thursday. Norma Gray, Rock Hill’s NAACP president, also pleaded for the community to demonstrate peacefully.“The officers that are called to serve and protect, are not the officers that were out on the scene,” Gray said. “We are asking you to protect them. Black Lives Matter. All Lives Matter. These officers need to go home to their families unbruised, unharmed.”The incident began when the police department’s violent crime unit was working with special agents from the Department of Homeland Security on an operation focusing on “known repeat offenders,” Watts said. One of those offenders was Ricky Price, he said. Price was pulled over on traffic violations, and a police dog searched his vehicle, police said.“Officers did locate two bags of marijuana and a handgun in the back seat and placed Ricky into handcuffs,” Watts said. Price’s younger brother soon arrived at the gas station where Ricky Price was being investigated, Watts said. At one point, the elder Price asked officers to remove his handcuffs so he could remove jewelry, which the allowed, Watts said. Travis Price approached his brother and was told by the officers to get back. He refused, Watts said, and a scuffle followed.

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