Police Chief Acevedo "sickened and saddened" by traffic stop video
Breaion King released the following statement through her lawyer:
"What happened to me was inexcusable and the individual officers who violated my rights, and the public trust, must be held accountable in our courts of law. The violence we have recently seen against the men and women who serve us in uniform is also deplorable. I am proud to teach some of the smartest 2nd graders in Austin and it is important to me to set the right example for them. Speaking out against injustice is our duty, but violence is never justified and not welcome in my name. "
"Sickened and saddened" those are the words from Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo regarding the actions of two of his officers during a traffic stop and arrest of a black woman.
In the dash cam video you see one of the officers Bryan Richter, who’s been with the department for more than 6 years throw 25-year-old Breaion King to the ground multiple times during a traffic stop in June of 2015. A second video shows another officer having a conversation with King while taking her to the jail. “My heart was sickened and saddened when I first learned of the incident,” Chief Art Acevedo said he just learned of the incident earlier this week. The DA's office asked him to open an investigation, to decide if criminal charges could be filed against the officer.
The chief has also started multiple investigations. He said it went up a chain of command, and wants to know why it didn't reach his level. “I think that my reaction would be a little bit different,” he said.
Officer Richter is not the only one being investigated in the incident. Video was rolling when King was being transported to jail by Officer Patrick Spradlin who’s been with APD for almost 15 years. In the video conversation between Spradlin and King was recorded. "Why are so many people afraid of black people? I can give you a really good idea why it could be that way, violent tendencies,” Spradlin said. "I am not saying it's true. I am not saying I can prove it or nothing, but 99% of the time, when you hear about stuff like that, it is the black community that is being violent, that's why a lot of the white people are afraid, and I don't blame them," Spradlin is heard in the video.
“The thought process and the statements made by our officer that was having what appears to be from just looking at it, he thinks he's just having a normal conversation and it's okay to have this conversation. A mindset that has no business in society, but definitely has no business in policing,” Chief Acevedo said.
King never filed a complaint with APD, something Chief Acevedo said he wishes she would've done.
“People are hesitant to come forward, and let us know when we don't do the right things. People are hesitant to let us know about a conversation that is exposing a mindset,” he said.
Richter and Spradlin are both on "non-law enforcement duty" as the investigations continue.
Read APD releases dashcam video of June 2015 traffic stop, begins internal investigation