Video of Waffle House arrest by Saraland police sparks community outrage
SARALAND, Ala. (WPMI) - The community is on edge over a video that has gone viral on social media. The video, which was taken down for violating Facebook policies but has since been reposted and shared nationwide, shows a young woman being aggressively wrestled to the ground by three male police officers as they tried to handcuff her.
Chikesia Clemons was forced to floor with the top of her dress coming off as officers wrestled with her on the floor, trying to handcuff her. Clemons is shown pleading with them, while remaining partially nude on the floor of the Waffle House as patrons and staff watched the incident unfold.
Reportedly the whole thing began over a 50-cent charge for plastic utensils.
"What I want actually is to get justice for my daughter in this case. I don't feel that she was treated fairly. I think the things that were showed were very offensive not only to me as a woman but to my child,” said Clemons' mother.
At one point the video seems to show one officer pull out a taser gun.
"Then they had her on the floor with a gun to her head -- that's not how you treat our children. Injustice to one is injustice to all. We have to stop spending our money where people don't want our services at, where they don't want our business at, I mean," said a friend of Clemons.
On Sunday afternoon protesters gathered at the Waffle House on Industrial Parkway demanding answers. Once police arrived at the scene, things took a dramatic turn after officers detained one protester, which added more fuel to the fire.
"I’m angry, yes, because it keeps happening," said one protester.
"No justice, no peace, no racist police," said another protester WPMI interviewed.
The Saraland Police Department issued a statement Sunday morning stating that they were still investigating exactly what had happened and weren't able to comment further. We are pushing for answers.
During a public meeting on Sunday afternoon, the president of Mobile's NAACP chapter called for calmer heads to prevail, until he is able to get answers about the investigation.
"Let’s find out why it happened the way it happened. The parents have confidence in us and some of these other folks just want to cause a problem. I want a solution," said the president.
The Waffle House corporation has not released a statement about the video and the Saraland Police Department says it will address the situation Monday.