Rickia Young was pulled from her car amid protests against police brutality.
The city of Philadelphia agreed to pay $ 2 million to Rickia Young, who was pulled from her vehicle, beaten by police and separated from her 2-year-old son in October 2020, according to city hall.
“She’s still dealing with the trauma, even though it’s been almost a year,” Young’s attorney, Kevin Mincey, told ABC News. “She’s still dealing with that, and she’s also dealing with her son’s trauma.”
The incident occurred as protests against police brutality after the police shooting that killed Walter Wallace Jr took place across town.
Young, her 2-year-old son and a friend’s 16-year-old son were driving in West Philadelphia on October 27, 2020, when she encountered protesters blocking the street in a deadlock with police, who ordered Young turn around. As she began to turn around, Young’s attorneys said she pulled over to avoid hitting protesters running near her car.
Young’s attorneys said officers raided his vehicle and smashed his windows with batons, then opened his car door, pulled Young and the 16-year-old from their seats and started beating them. Young was arrested by police and her 2-year-old son was taken from her.
The teenager is not involved in the $ 2 million settlement.
Young also said the National Fraternal Order of Police used a photo of his son after he was taken from him in the incident and used it on social media to promote pro-police posts in line.
FOP national spokesperson Jessica Cahill told The Associated Press the post was quickly deleted when he learned of the story behind the photo. The National Fraternal Order of Police did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.
“I will never forget what those officers did to us that night,” Young said at a press conference Tuesday. “I hope the officers in charge never get a chance to do something like this to another person again.”
According to his lawyers, Young suffered from swelling of his face and body, as well as a swollen windpipe. The beating was caught on a cell phone camera and went viral online.
“The behavior that occurred during the interaction between Rickia Young, her nephew, her son and some of the police officers at the scene violated the mission of the Philadelphia Police Department,” Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said in a statement to ABC News.
Two officers have been fired in connection with the incident, according to the office of Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney. There are also 14 members of the department awaiting disciplinary hearings following an internal investigation into the incident.
“The ability of the officers and supervisors on the scene to defuse the situation was abandoned, and instead of tackling crime and the fear of crime, some of the officers at the scene created an environment that terrorized Rickia Young, her family. and other members of the public, ”Outlaw said.
Kenney said he hopes the settlement and investigations into the agents’ actions could end Young and his family.
“This terrible incident, which should never have happened to anyone, has only worsened the relationship between the police department and our communities,” Kenney said in a statement to ABC News. “The officers’ inexcusable actions that evening led to an immediate and thorough investigation of the incident and staff to be disciplined and held accountable for their blatant conduct.”
Mincey calls on the district attorney to take more action against the officers involved.
“District Attorney Lawrence Krasner must lay criminal charges against the officers involved,” Mincey said. “If a citizen did something like this, there is no doubt that he will be charged with aggravated assault as a felony.”
Krasner did not say whether he would pursue a criminal case against the officers.