Springfield officer used stun gun on pregnant woman during arrest

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Title

Springfield officer used stun gun on pregnant woman during arrest

Catalog Entry

In the city of Springfield, Massachusetts on september 2020 something devastating occurred. A pregnant woman was cornered on the floor and tasered by a Springfield Police Officer in a downtown hotel. When we look at this video we see many things that the officer did wrong and we see an excessive amount of force on the pregnant women by that said officer. The video is a bit out of context but that doesn’t justify what the officer did. Once the officer heard that she’s pregnant he should’ve right away stopped and he should've radioed in for medical care. A main question that pops into my head is why the officer did this and why many other officers do the same thing. It might not be on a pregnant woman but they use excessive force on other people in other situations. Was the officer having a bad day that he needed to take out his anger out on this poor lady or does he have a grudge against women who are pregnant. Whatever the reason was that officer should be held fully accountable for that. There are no reasons for his actions, he messed up and he knows it. What the officer did in that video is not only just a crime but it's also a form of hate culture and having your power go to your head. The officer's name in that video is Leon Davis. Mr.Davis faces assault and battery, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and assault and battery against a pregnant victim. Leon Davis in the video tasered the

pregnant woman and then says “You wanna play those games” as if his job was a video game where you can just come back to life and act like nothing happens. 

To add to this the Springfield police department didn’t release the video until four months after. But what if there wasn’t a video of this accident. What if we would've never even seen this, the officer would keep on doing what he is doing and using excessive force in situations where it isn’t needed. It is very important that we have these video cameras on our police officers. So we can see the type of behavior these rogue police officers use on the people of this country. The officers that are around didn’t say anything to stop the officers from tasering the pregnant woman. How can these officers just look at a pregnant woman getting tasered and not say anything? In Cambridge, MA they implemented a new law on this matter. On the Cambridge.ma.gov website in the news and alerts section it stated, “Police Commissioner Branville G. Bard, Jr. today announced a General Order to all sworn members of the Cambridge Police Department specific to an officer’s duty to intervene. The General Order, which is effective immediately, requires all sworn members of the Cambridge Police Department present at any scene where physical force is being applied, to either stop, or attempt to stop, another member of the Department when force is being unreasonably applied or is no longer required.” With this being something that a city like Cambridge does, why doesn’t Springfield do this. Had this been a law in Springfield the officer would’ve and should’ve gotten stopped by the other officers around. Now of course a beautiful city like Cambridge can’t be compared to what is seen on the streets of Springfield but a law like that should be given state wide even better throughout the whole country, not just a small city like Springfield. There are always exceptions as to what laws go with what state but for this to happen, there is no exception for this. The officer also

tasered her four times and watched her as she screamed in pain. The officer did not only hurt the pregnant woman but he also hurt the baby that’s in her. The poor innocent baby most definitely felt the power of that stun gun. What did the baby do to officer Leon Davis? Did the baby resist? The officer had absolutely no right to do that unborn child and their mother. 

Let's think about what a police officer is supposed to do. In short they’re supposed to serve and protect and help all of the civilians. They have provided beneficence to all of us. That means that they have to do whatever benefits the people in their community. They're public servants and doing this to the public isn’t in their job descriptions. Most police officers are great people and great officers. They genuinely want to make a difference and have their community safer. But officers like the one that was seen in the video are the ones that ruin it for the other officers and give the police a bad picture and a bad name. On July 8th 2020 the DOJ (Department Of Justice) released an online paper regarding a situation that occurred in the narcotics unit in Springfield PD. On the justice.gov website under office of public affairs it stated, “Following a comprehensive investigation, the Justice Department announced today that it has found reasonable cause to believe the Narcotics Bureau of the Springfield, Massachusetts, Police Department (SPD) engages in a pattern or practice of using excessive force in violation of the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution.” The DOJ doesn’t get involved with just any case regarding a police department. For the DOJ to say this it means that the department needs to be wiped clean of all these rogue police officers and have them apply again and the ones that don’t even bother to apply then it's clear their intentions were never good. The Springfield police department has had too many incidents for them not to check and take out these bad officers and put some new ones with more training and better mentality in place. What happened to that unarmed pregnant woman is devastating and nobody should have to go through that, hopefully that officer will be held accountable.

Bibliography

“Justice Department Announces Findings of Investigation into Narcotics  Bureau of Springfield, Massachusetts Police Department.” The United States Department of Justice, 8 July 2020, www.justice.gov/opa/pr/justice-department-announces-findings-investigation-narcotics-bureau-springfield. 

“New General Order Issued Requires Officers to Intervene When Another Officer Uses Unreasonable Force.” Cambridgemass.gov, 8 June 2020.

Catalog Entry Author(s)

Anthony De Leon, Student, Fitchburg State University

ALFA Mentor

Bill Ayadi

Citation

“Springfield officer used stun gun on pregnant woman during arrest,” Cultural Heritage through Image, accessed August 10, 2022, https://culturalheritagethroughimage.omeka.net/items/show/192.

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