The family of a Black teen who was brutally pulled down by her hair and then tackled by a white Texas police officer as she attempted to leave a pool party in 2015 is suing the officer who attacked her, the police department and the city of McKinney.
According to Raw Story, Dajerria Becton and her legal guardian, Shashona Becton, have filed a $5 million suit in federal court stating former Officer Eric Casebolt violated her constitutional rights by using excessive force and holding her without probable cause.
Video of Casebolt tackling Becton went viral in 2015 creating a national uproar as viewers saw the white cop kneeling on the bikini-clad teen as her face was pressed into the grass. Casebolt later resigned despite some white neighbors saying his actions were justified.
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.
Becton also stated that Casebolt handcuffed her even though she was complying while being held down.
“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.
McKinney officials disputed Becton’s claim, issuing a statement saying: “The City of McKinney denies the claims alleged against it and the McKinney Police Department, and as such, will vigorously defend the recently filed lawsuit,” the statement reads. “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.”