After Arrest Of Black Teenager, 1 Lousiana Officer Placed On Leave And 2 Others Removed From Duty

by Joe Jurado

In Louisiana, an inves­ti­ga­tion has been launched into three offi­cers involved in the arrest of two Black teenagers out­side of a Lafayette bowl­ing alley.

CNN reports that last Saturday, 16-year-old twins Jabari and Gerard Celestine were wait­ing out­side to enter the Arcadia Lanes bowl­ing alley when three Lafayette police offi­cers, respond­ing to a call about some­one who had a gun near­by, arrived. Ron Haley Jr., an attor­ney for the fam­i­ly, told CNN that nei­ther boy had a gun on them. According to Haley, the offi­cers approached Jabari, read him his rights, and then placed him in hand­cuffs when they arrived.

Multiple videos of the inci­dent went viral on social media, with one show­ing Gerard approach­ing the offi­cers as they arrest his broth­er. Another video shows the offi­cers push­ing Gerard against a wall and an offi­cer repeat­ed­ly punch­ing him once he’s on the ground

While Jabari was released with­out being charged, Gerard was arrest­ed on charges of inter­fer­ence, resist­ing arrest, and bat­tery of a police offi­cer. Interim Police Chief Scott Morgan has launched an inves­ti­ga­tion into the arrest and placed one of the offi­cers on admin­is­tra­tive leave. The oth­er offi­cers have been removed from reg­u­lar duty, pend­ing the results of the inves­ti­ga­tion. The Lafayette Police Department has not released the names of the offi­cers involved or said why they were at the bowl­ing alley.

Man. They, alleged­ly, real­ly tried to arrest Jabari just because he was Black. Like it’s bla­tant­ly obvi­ous, y’all. The fact they just showed up, read his rights, and cuffed him with­out even ask­ing ques­tions or see­ing if he had a gun says it all.

This is only the lat­est inci­dent involv­ing the Lafayette Police Department as last month, the depart­ment faced out­rage fol­low­ing the shoot­ing death of Trayford Pellerin, a 31-year-old Black man. Haley, who also rep­re­sents Pellerin’s fam­i­ly, said that the arrest only spot­lights how nec­es­sary it is for police to address sys­temic racism.

First you have to be trans­par­ent,” Haley told CNN. “If you are a law enforce­ment offi­cer, you have one of the only jobs in the coun­try where it is legal in your job descrip­tion to take away someone’s life, lib­er­ty, and prop­er­ty. With that pow­er, there must be trans­paren­cy.”

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