A video showing cops in Jefferson Parish, a suburb of New Orleans, allegedly planting crack near an African American suspect in handcuffs has gone viral on social media this week in a potentially dark situation for the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office.
The video, which went viral on Monday, shows three Jefferson Parish police officers surrounding an African American man who is lying on the ground while handcuffed. One of the officers, a white man standing next to the suspect, Dominique Griffin, can be seen looking around while the suspect protested.
The Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office said the police were responding to a call claiming a man in a red T-shirt and tie-dye pants was selling drugs in the neighborhood. The Sheriff’s Office added that a man fitting the description was approached and was placed in handcuffs after resisting attempts to investigate the situation.
While handcuffed on the ground, Griffin began claiming his innocence.
“There ain’t no crack in the bag,” Griffin began shouting. “Are you serious?”
The video then shows an officer place a small bag with a white substance on the ground. Onlookers immediately begin shouting at the officer, informing him they were recording and saw that he dropped the bag on the ground. The officer then begins to approach the person holding the camera and shouts to go away.
“The video in question is part of the evidence that has been collected in this case. It has been alleged by third parties that evidence on the scene was planted by one of our deputies. Our on-scene deputies have been interviewed in this matter and gave reasonable explanations to the actions depicted in the video,” a statement from the JPSO said.
Sheriff Joseph Lopinto added that all the deputies who were involved in the arrest were interviewed separately and all maintained that a bag containing pills were removed from Griffin’s pocket during the arrest and placed on the ground.
“The arrested individual was not booked with any narcotics charges,” a JPSO statement said. “But will face charges for battery on an officer, battery on an officer with injury, and resisting arrest with force or violence.”
Incidents of police brutality against African American men have been rampant over the last few years coinciding with the Black Lives Matter protests across the country. Additionally, this isn’t the first time the JPSO has been thrust into the public eye.
Watch the video below.