An internal investigation has been launched after officers in Grand Rapids, Mich. handcuffed an 11-year-old girl at gunpoint and put her in the back of a squad car. Honestie Hodges had dreams of becoming a police officer, but no longer wants anything to do with law enforcement after the traumatic ordeal.
The incident, which Grand Rapids Police Chief David Rahinsky called “disturbing,” occurred last week.
“Listening to the 11-year-old’s response makes my stomach turn,” Rahinksy said Tuesday (Dec. 12). “It makes me physically nauseous.”
The officers arrived to the home where Honestie lives with her mother to search for her 40-year-old aunt, who was suspected of stabbing a relative. Honestie is black, and her aunt is white, but officers ended up slapping cuffs on the child after telling her to walk backwards towards them, with her hands up.
In the footage, Honestie mother informs the cops that her daughter is 11 year old. “The whole time they are telling her to come down, I’m telling them, ‘She’s 11 years old. That’s my daughter. Don’t cuff her,’” Whitney Hodges told Michigan’s Grand Rapids news outlet WOOD TV.
Honestie complies with the officer’s demands, and can be heard pleading, “No! No! No! No!” as the handcuffs go on.
The fifth-grader was cuffed for two minutes, patted down, and placed in the bag of a squad car for 10 minute, TIME reports.
“I’m afraid to open or go near my back door because of what happened,” she said to WOOD TV. “It made me feel scared and it made me feel like I did something wrong.”
“I wanted to be a detective or police officer, but now I don’t want anything to do with those kind of things,” Honestie noted. “I’m just wondering why they did that to me.”
See more in the video above.