Florida police union uses Facebook photos to smear woman who posted video of cop punching teen
A Florida woman who posted video of a Miami cop beating a black teenager in the back of police cruiser has found herself under attack by the Miami Fraternal Order of Police, reports the Washington Post.
Pushing back against social media — described as having placed a very negative tone on law enforcement nationwide” — the Miami Fraternal Order of Police union handed out the name and some purported Facebook photos of Marilyn Smith who posted the video of the cop assault taken by her friend Shenitria Blocker.
The video, which has since gone viral, shows an unidentified officer beating a suspected pot suspect in the back of a police cruiser, before another officer tried to yank the recording device from Blocker’s hand.
According to Blocker, police told her to delete the video or she would be arrested. Instead she shared the video with Smith who then posted it to her Facebook page, leading to an investigation and suspension of the officer.
In a statement to the press, Union President Lt. Javier Ortiz defended the officer saying he was “protecting our community,” before criticizing the public for using social media to shine a light on police abuses by adding, “social media has placed a very negative tone on law enforcement nationwide.”
Along with the the statement the Union also handed out screenshots taken from Smith’s Facebook page showing her with black men holding guns.
“What is extremely concerning is that the poster of this video (aka Facebook Marilyn Smith) has photographs of her with young men armed with handguns. It seems that no one cares to address this. Social media has focused so much on #blacklifematters [sic] /alllifematters campaigns, yet nobody targets the root of the problem our community faces today,” the statement read.
“If the police officer has done something not within policy, it must be corrected. With that said, there is a much more serious message by this video poster. Our community has accepted behavior that motivates violence in our younger generation. It’s time for the community to take a stand against this reckless behavior and stop the violence. As the saying goes: It takes a village to raise a child. Guns don’t belong in the hands of children. It is the responsibility of our stakeholders that live in our community to stop that from occurring in the first place.”
Smith has taken her Facebook page down while the case is still being investigated.