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DeKalb Police incident ignites protests [VIDEO]

 

 

In the aftermath of a DeKalb County Police officer being filmed repeatedly striking a homeless woman with his baton, protests were held in several locations through the county asking for the officer to be fired for alleged police brutality.

The incident, which occurred June 4 at a gas station on Glenwood Road, involved DeKalb officer P.J. Larscheid and Katie McCrary. According to the incident report, McCary was allegedly asking customers for money. Once Larscheid arrived at the scene, McCary—who allegedly told the officer she was a federal agent and gave him a fake badge number—tried to grab the officer’s badge and a scuffle ensued, according to the incident report.

Larscheid said he struck McCrary an “unknown amount of times” on her left leg.

The incident was caught on video and posted to various social media platforms.

Civil rights groups in DeKalb County said the officer went too far and should be fired.

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“We want justice for this woman. She was accosted by a DeKalb County Police officer because she was begging for money. Where’s the crime in that?” said Dekalb Southern Christian Leadership Conference President Nathan Knight in a protest at the DeKalb County Police headquarters in Tucker July 14.

Knight said he respects the DeKalb County Police Department saying, “this is one of the finest departments in the nation,” but wants Larscheid to be held accountable for his actions.

In the video posted online, McCrary can be seen on the ground grabbing Larscheid’s baton. Larscheid then said, “let it go or I’m going to shoot you” multiple times.

DeKalb County Police Chief James Conroy issued a statement regarding the incident.

“The Georgia Bureau of Investigation has agreed to conduct an investigation of a June 4 use of force incident involving DeKalb Police Officer P.J. Larscheid.  The request was made following a meeting with DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond, who stressed the importance of a factual, independent investigation based on the new video evidence and other pertinent information,” said Conroy.

The DeKalb Pastors Alliance held a press conference at Greenforest Community Baptist Church in Decatur on July 14.

In a statement, the DPA said it has “zero tolerance for this type of treatment of any person.”

Protests in support of McCrary are planned for this month including a protest by the New Order National Human Rights Organization (NONHRO).

A statement from NONHRO said it plans to “interrupt the county commission meeting” and demand Larscheid be fired. The organization said it plans to specifically request commissioners Larry Johnson, Gregory Adams and DeKalb County CEO Thurmond to take action.
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