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Cops Seize Black Woman's Car, Post Taunting Video

Detroit police chief James Craig slams 'racially insensitive' Snapchat post
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 1, 2019 10:28 AM CST
Detroit Police Chief James Craig addresses the media, Oct. 19, 2018, in Detroit.   (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

(Newser) – "Bye, Felicia," the police officer says from the comfort of his patrol car as he watches a black woman walking home in freezing temperatures. That's not the worst of the video posted Tuesday to Snapchat by Detroit police officer Gary Steele, who is white. The phrases "celebrating Black History Month" and "what black girl magic looks like" are imposed on the footage of 24-year-old Ariel Moore walking to her home a block away after being pulled over for an expired registration, reports the Metro Times. "Priceless" and "walk of shame" are added in commentary provided by Steele and his partner. "I've never had this happen to me in my life. I'm kind of shocked," Moore tells WXYZ. Police Chief James Craig noted that Moore declined a police offer of a ride home, but he, too, criticized the resulting social media post.

"I'm angry because this was a racially insensitive post" from an officer with "a troubling history," Craig said, referring to Steele's arrest in 2008 for firing a gun in a dispute with his girlfriend. The 18-year veteran of the department took a misdemeanor plea deal for probation, reports the Daily Beast, though Craig says "it would have been a different outcome if I had been chief." Steele has now been stripped of his corporal ranking and reassigned amid an investigation. Craig says the department will also waive fees associated with towing Moore's car. Meanwhile, he's offered an apology to Moore's mother, who said the "racist" video showed officers "demeaning my child for no reason." Craig suggested the fact that Moore was mocked while walking alone at night was bad enough. "In my view, she's in harm's way," he said. "It could've been my daughter." (Read more Detroit stories.)

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