In 2015, McKinney, Texas police officer Eric Casebolt violently broke up a pool party by brandishing a gun at a group of unarmed teens and throwing a 15-year old girl to the ground, slamming her into the concrete. In 2016, a grand jury declined to charge him. Now, Dajerria Becton, the 15-year old girl in the video, is filing a $5 million lawsuit against Casebolt, the McKinney police department and the city of McKinney.
Raw Story reports that Becton and her legal guardian Shashona Becton have filed the suit in federal court, alleging that the former officer violated her constitutional rights by using excessive force.
Becton also stated that Casebolt handcuffed her even though she was complying while being held down.
According to the lawsuit, Becton claims she had been invited to the pool party by a resident and was complying with the officer when he broke up the party.
Her affidavit states that Casebolt approached her with his baton raised forward, grabbed her by the wrist and dragged her to the ground, pulling her hair as he slammed her face into the ground before kneeling upon her.
“The entire time D.B. she could do nothing by cry out in pain and repeatedly beg for her ‘Momma’ as she endured the pain inflicted upon her by Defendant Casebolt’s physical assault,” the lawsuit states.
The video shows the incident in horrifying detail: police officers breaking up a group of nonviolent and apparently unarmed teens by waving their weapons in their face and screaming. Once Casebolt has subdued Becton, who was putting up no protest, he forcibly restrains her while teens with their hands zip-tied behind their backs sit quietly on the ground.
A statement from the McKinney Police department soundly refutes the allegations, saying “McKinney prides itself in cultivating the highest standards of training and professionalism for our officers, and it strongly believes that its standards and training will withstand legal challenge.”