Muskogee Police Release Video of Officer Pepper Spraying 84-Year-Old Woman
Muskogee Oklahoma police have released body camera footage showing one of its officers pepper spraying an 84-year-old woman in her home.
In the video obtained by Fox 23 News, police officers are seen kicking in the door of Geneva Smith’s home in pursuit of her son, 56-year-old Arthur Paul Blackmon in the early morning of Aug. 7.
Police said officers were conducting a routine traffic stop on Blackmon, who allegedly ran through a stop sign, when he took off running towards his mother’s residence. When Blackmon refused to follow officers’ orders to come out of the home, police kicked down the door.
In the clip, police can be seen ordering Blackmon to walk over with his hands up. “Walk my way … Come out here now … I’m going to tase you,” police can be heard saying in the video. After Blackmon, who did have his hands up, refused to come over as ordered one of the officers standing in the doorpost tasered him.
As soon as the officers enter the house, an officer holding either a handgun or a taser is pointing the weapon at Blackmon’s mother and grabbing her by her shoulder trying to push her down while yelling “get down, get down.”
When a different officer approaches the 84-year-old mother she says “don’t [expletive] with me, don’t put your hands on me.”
An officer later identified as Michelle Casady then warns her, “Turn around and face that way, now, or I’ll spray you.” Smith was pepper sprayed about a minute after they kicked in the door.
“My mother’s 84 years old, [expletive],” Blackmon can be heard saying after his mother was pepper sprayed.
Smith falls to ground and is handcuffed while she lays on the floor. Smith was taken to jail, where she later suffered a panic attack. She was then transported to a hospital and released without charges.
Blackmon was charged with driving under the influence, obstructing an officer, driving with a suspended license and carrying a weapon.
The octogenarian plans to take legal action for her ordeal and said she is still feeling the effects of the pepper spray.
“It feels like I have gravel in my eye,” Smith told the Mercury Phoenix.
John Wood, an attorney for the city of Muskogee, said the police’s actions were reasonable “given the totality of the circumstances,” reported the Mercury Phoenix.