FALL RIVER, Mass. (WPRI) — Fall River police have released body-worn camera footage from the arrest of eight teenagers on Wednesday.
The incident happened at a fast food restaurant on President Avenue. Police said they were called to the business at the request of a manager to disperse the crowd.
The teenagers had been fighting in the parking lot before entering the restaurant, according to police. Officers repeatedly warned the group they needed to leave or they would face charges.
The bodycam video shows an officer’s initial interaction with the first teenager to be arrested. The officer could be heard ordering the teenager to leave. The teen then asked, “Can I order first and then leave?” In response, the officer said, “Time to go.”
“Can I know why?” the teenager asked.
“Because [the manager] doesn’t want anybody in here,” the officer replied.
The situation escalated in the parking lot when the first teenager tried to walk back inside. The officer could be seen grabbing him by the arm and ordering him to leave. That’s when other teenagers in the group began swearing at the officers, who repeatedly kept telling them to leave.
The bodycam footage then skips to when the officers went back inside the restaurant as the first teenager appeared to get in line.
That teenager was then arrested for trespassing, according to police.
The officer can be seen in the video leading the teenager outside in handcuffs and forcing him to the ground. The teenager can be heard swearing and shouting at the officer throughout the ordeal.
Another teenager was also taken into custody for allegedly refusing the leave the parking lot. The bodycam video shows two officers simultaneously pushing her into a wall.
In total, police said the officers issued 23 warnings to the group of teenagers before making any arrests.
Police said they don’t normally release bodycam footage, but wanted to in this case in the interest of transparency and accountability.
The eight teenagers have been charged with trespassing. Others are facing additional charges, including resisting arrest and disorderly conduct, while one teenager is charged with two counts of assaulting an officer.