Disturbing Video of Police Brutality Finally Released
(TX) – New Braunfels is a medium-sized city just north of San Antonio, Texas. New Braunfels has a long history of racism that they have been working hard to overcome. In January of this year, there was an incident that showed more work needs to be done.
Clarence Crawford was driving on the highway when a police officer activated his lights behind Crawford. Crawford continued driving until he could exit the highway and pulled into the parking lot of a medical clinic. Officer Kaleb Meyer, with the New Braunfels Police Department, exited his vehicle and immediately drew his weapon, pointing it toward Mr. Crawford as he approached the car, yelling for Crawford to put his hands up.
Policing Through the Eyes of a Black Man
Mr. Crawford had no idea what he was being pulled over for. The only criminal history he had was one traffic violation. He had continued driving until he could find a safe place to pull over to interact with the officer. This is something that even police agencies tell people to do. Officer Meyer chose to take that as an attemp, by Mr. Crawford, to evade arrest and decided to escalate the situation by pulling his weapon and treating Mr. Crawford as if he were a dangerous criminal.
Mr. Crawford was well aware that any movement by a Black man is often taken as aggression by officers, even when it’s movement the officers have instructed them to make. At multiple points during their interaction, Mr. Crawford asks for assurance that if he moves the way Meyer tells him to, that Meyer will not shoot him. All this does is aggravate Meyer.
Once out of the car, Meyer ordered Crawford to the ground. Remember, Crawford still has no idea why he is being treated like this. He doesn’t know why he was pulled over. The situation eventually results in Meyer tasing Crawford twice because Crawford is not down the way Meyer wants him to be.
Was Meyer’s Excessive Force Defended by Police Chief?
So what was this all about? Why was this Black man treated as if he was on the FBI’s Most Wanted list? It was because he had a dirty license plate. This was all over a dirty license plate. Meyer was only with the New Braunfels Police Department for “a year and eight months but resigned a few months ago, around September.” However, what caught my attention from the KSAT article was that Police Chief Tom Wibert resigned also and according to KSAT, it was “partially due” to this incident.
I’ve been thinking about this and the only thing I can think of is that Chief Wibert did not feel Meyer was in the wrong or that it was a minor infraction. Everyone else, including the mayor, felt this was an unnecessary use of force and excessive force. If Chief Wibert were on the same page as them, then there would be no reason to resign. This is disturbing. As we’ve said before, attitude comes from the top down.
Reminder – Officer Kaleb Meyer was not fired. It is very likely that he is with another police department.
KSAT 12 has an excellent video that shows the scene from the camera mounted in the police car. We highly recommend you watch it. The YouTube video below is video from Officer Meyer’s body cam.