Public Outing Gone Wrong
With police brutality at the top of the list of current social issues, one would think that officers and citizens alike would be extra careful with each other. Yet and still, here we are with another — albeit milder than most — case of a police officer in hot water for using unnecessary, overly-excessive force.
While hanging out in Biloxi, Mississippi a few days ago, Baton Rouge rapper Boosie Badazz went to the neighborhood mall to shop and engage with the locals. While there, him and his pregnant cousin were handled forcefully, sending the “Mind of a Maniac” rapper’s kin into premature labor.
Starting With Good Intentions
On April 9 of this year, Boosie and his cousin visited Edgewater Mall, dropping in Dillard’s to pick up some Polo ware. According to the formal complaint filled by Boosie, he “wanted to engage his local fans and supporters, and purchase goods in support of the local community.”
Before the Bad Azz rapper could even get to the dressing room, he claims a plainclothes officer of the Biloxi Police Department asked him to leave for no reason.
When Boosie protested, the officer, who was working on behalf of Dillard’s, sprayed him “in his face and upper body with Mace. The unknown officer also referred to [Boosie] in derogatory terms, including calling him a ni##er.” Along with the father-of-three, Bossie’s cousin, Tyeon Givens, who was 27 weeks pregnant with twins at the time, was also pepper-sprayed.
The now mother-of-two started having contractions, going into labor, shortly after being forced to leave the department store. Her babies suffer from “cardiac, respiratory and other issues.” Givens and her family, including her famous cousin Boosie, feel that the early birth was in direct relation to the harmful treatment she experienced at the hands of the Biloxi Police Department officer.
Back in April, soon after the event, Biloxi police Lt. Chris De Back claimed that the officer, who was reportedly off-duty at the time of the altercation, responded with pepper spray because he was aggressively approached.
He Say, She Say
The lawsuit against Dillard’s was filed in Harrison County Circuit Court on Tuesday, Oct. 17. “As a result of the negligence of the Defendants, the Plaintiffs suffered actual physical injuries and damages, and Plaintiff’s emotional distress directly resulted from personal injuries and damages proximately caused by such physical injuries and damages which directly resulted from Defendants’ negligence,” read the suit.
“Defendants failed to properly train and supervise the unknown security officers or security staff working at or on the Dillard’s premises.”
While Dillard’s has not put forth a formal comment or responded in any way yet, Vincent Creel, public affairs manager for the City of Biloxi, gave a comment on behalf of the Biloxi Police Department. “The city received its first notice of these claims on Monday and a lawsuit was filed the next day. The city is confident that Biloxi Police Department is not a proper party to this lawsuit,” he stated.
A witness to the event, Crystal Whitmore, claimed that a security guard asked the Life After Deathrow artist to leave after a large crowd of fans followed Bossie into the store.
The rapper is staying quiet on social media about the suit. Hopefully this case will pan out better than the one involving Boosie’s brother, Taquari “TQ” Hatch. Hatch was accused of posing as his famous sibling to send dozens of wire transfers to multiple people. When it came down to it though, the D.A. in charge of TQ’s case did not file charges against him.
Read the full lawsuit filed against Dillard’s here.
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