Police chased a 10-year-old black boy with guns drawn after mistaking him for an adult armed robbery suspect.
Legend Preston had been playing with a basketball that rolled into the street near his home in Newark, and he chased after it, reported WABC-TV.
Police officers approached with their weapons drawn, and the husky fifth-grader thought they were after him for going into the street — so the boy fled in terror.
“I ran because they thought that I rolled the ball into the street on purpose, and they were just holding shot guns at me trying to shoot me,” Legend said.
Newark police said the officers did have their guns drawn but insisted they never pointed their weapons at the boy as they pursued him into an alley.
Witnesses intervened at that point and told police thy person they had detained was a child.
“He’s only 10 years old, how you all chasing him? He’s only a kid. I’m like, that’s messed up,” said neighbor Jackie Kelly.
The boy’s mother was inside their home during the incident, and she later posted a video of her tearful and “petrified” son on her Facebook page to draw attention to the matter.
“These policemen who had guns drawn on my child are still on these streets,” said Patisha Preston, the child’s mother.
Police later arrested 20-year-old Casey Joseph Robinson in connection with the armed robbery.