Action Alert: No Police Violence Against Children


It’s time to tell the ACCPD we do not support its officers’ use of excessive force!

a hand holding a phone

After an investigation into the July 20 incident in which Athens-Clarke County police officers threw down and restrained an emotionally distraught 10-year-old boy, Lt. Richard Odum, head of the ACCPD Office of Professional Standards, found that “no policy violations occurred and the force used was reasonable.”  We disagree.

Call or email:

R. Scott Freeman, ACCPD Chief of Police: (706) 613-3330 or Scott.Freeman@accgov.com

On July 20, two ACCPD officers arrived at a residence while responding to an assault charge. As they were arresting the man in question, his 10-year-old son became understandably distraught. The child threw himself into one officer, and the other officer grabbed the boy and restrained him on the ground. Click here to watch the chest-cam video that the police department released to the public shortly after video from the child’s cousin went viral on social media. An internal investigation found that no policy had been violated and that the use of force was “reasonable.”

Athens for Everyone is disappointed with this outcome. Black and brown communities are regularly over-policed, and studies have shown that people perceive black children as more mature and less innocent than white children. No child should be treated in such a manner, and if the response in this incident did not violate the ACCPD’s policy on use of force, then the department needs to revise that policy.

Personalized calls are more effective than multiple calls reading the same script, so express your personal feelings frankly! Here is an example script that you can build off of or use:

Hello,

My name is [NAME], and I live in [CITY]. I’m calling today because I oppose your policy regarding use of force against children. Throwing an emotionally distraught 10-year-old to the ground and holding him there with handcuffs prepared is an excessive response, leading to an incredibly traumatizing experience for a young child. Please reevaluate how your officers should respond in situations involving children.

Thank you for listening to my concerns.”

Please call the chief of police TODAY.

TELL HIM: We oppose excessive use of force!

Thanks for caring,

Legislative Action Network
Athens for Everyone

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