Two police officers claimed they smelled marijuana so they tackled a 16-year-old boy and proceeded to smash in his face.
New Castle County Police are reviewing the arrest of a teen in a cannabis investigation after video surfaced showing an officer repeatedly punching the boy in the head.
Cpl. Michel Eckerd, a spokesman for the department, said officers responded to East Bellamy Drive in the Carriage Run development near New Castle Friday night after receiving a drug-dealing complaint.
When the officers got there, they smelled weed on a 16-year-old boy who fit the description from the complaint. A struggle ensued as they attempted to apprehend him, Eckerd said.
The county police learned Saturday night that someone recorded the arrest and posted the video on social media, Eckerd said.
It’s an internal investigation right now. We always hold our officers to the highest standards of police conduct, and a complete review of this incident is underway,
After the 16-year-old was taken into custody, police found “numerous” bags of weed, a digital scale, prescription pills and over $1,000 in cash on the teen, Eckerd said.
The teen, identified by his family as Roger Darnell Brown, was charged with:
- resisting arrest
- manufacturing delivering or possessing with intent to manufacture or deliver a controlled substance
- two counts of misdemeanor offensive touching of a law enforcement officer
- possession of a controlled substance
- misdemeanor criminal mischief
- possession of drug paraphernalia for marijuana
Coleen Palmer said her son, Jaiden, was the one who shot the video about 5 p.m. Friday night. She shared it with The News Journal on Sunday.
Palmer said her son had just gotten a new dirtbike and took it over to Roger’s house to show it off.
Roger’s mother, Mary Fleming, said her son and Jaiden are normally outside after school, playing basketball and hanging out, but Friday evening Jaiden brought over his new dirtbike.
Roger was straddling the bike when police arrived and told him to get off it, Fleming said.
The bike did not have a kickstand, so her son stood up and was in the middle of walking the bike over to lean it against a tree when police tackled him to the ground, Fleming said.
Officers tell the person recording the video, Jaiden, to stop and go back in the house. He refuses, telling police he’s on private property.
The officers eventually handcuff the teen on the ground, the video shows.
By the time Fleming came home, her son had been taken away in an ambulance.