Doing Chores While Black: Teen Arrested While Taking Out Trash Ignites Backlash
Video of a Black teen being arrested by Lansing, Michigan Police is causing chaos online.
The video shows the teenager, wearing neon yellow shorts and a white T-shirt, being detained by an officer after being mistaken for a car theft suspect, Lansing State Journal reports. Posted on TikTok by careyann327 on Aug. 10 has over 215,000 likes and views and says the teen was arrested while taking out the trash.
@careyann327Kid taking out trash being harassed by police. Father defending his son. Wrong person.♬ original sound – Talkingtom24🐺
The Lansing, Michigan Police Department called the incident an “unfortunate misunderstanding” in a Facebook post. “A responding officer saw a subject matching this description and attempted to make contact but the subject fled and ran west into the nearby apartment complex,” the post reads. “A different officer was in the area and saw the young man pictured in the viral video wearing a very similar outfit and made contact with him. Once this information was obtained, the young man was released and officers continued to search the area.”
Social media users instantly defended the young man, blaming America for continuing the rift between Black people and the police. “Just a kid taking out the trash — America,” user Kenny Akers wrote on X (formerly Twitter).
Just a kid taking out the trash—America pic.twitter.com/OhNWTbCnqA
— Kenny Akers (@KeneAkers) August 11, 2023
Frank Giugliano, with the username nyccookies wrote, “This city is paying 6 police officers to arrest a child for throwing out garbage.”
The four-minute video shows the Michigan teen’s father pushing back against the police, calling his son the “perfect kid” and accusing the officer of always using an excuse. “They’ve traumatized my son,” the father said to the person taking the video.
Relations between Black people and police have been tense since the video of George Floyd’s death in 2020. Since then, citizens in major cities, including Atlanta, Baltimore, New York City, and Philadelphia, have called for defunding their police departments.