"You know, sweetheart, this is why there aren't any grocery stores in the black community." That's what Cincinnati police officer Kevin Brown told an 11-year-old African-American girl moments after tasing her for allegedly shoplifting $53 worth of food and clothing from a Kroger on Aug. 6. Police say the 55-year-old off-duty officer, also African-American, was working security at the store when he tried to apprehend three girls. In violation of department policy, he used a Taser on one without warning and only turned on his body camera afterward, reports the Cincinnati Inquirer. "That hurt my heart to do that to you," he tells the girl in the video released Tuesday, before addressing store closures in black communities. An internal review took note of the latter comment, which comes a year after Brown was written up for using a homophobic slur.
Brown defended the comment, however, on his belief that "the closing of a number of Kroger stores in black communities … resulted from large amounts of theft losses," the review states, per ABC News. "This guy, from what I am hearing, has serious issues," says Councilman Wendell Young, a former police officer. "He's building a case that makes it difficult for us to continue with him as a member of the police department." But it's up to Police Chief Eliot Isaac to decide the officer's fate, which could include counseling or termination. While promising to review department policy relating to Taser use on children, Isaac on Tuesday described Brown's use of the device as "unnecessary in this circumstance." Police say the girl took a backpack, "candy and beef jerky, as well as infant clothing," worth $53.81. Theft charges have been dropped. (Read more Taser stories.)