Police Department Facing Backlash Over Viral Arrest Video


MIDLAND, TX – The Midland Police Department is facing some criticism after a viral video showed MPD officers pointing their guns at 21-year-old Tye Anders.

According to CBS7, Anders, an African American male, was pulled over after an officer “noticed him driving suspiciously.”

According to the officer Anders failed to stop at a stop sign and then made “improper use of his turn signal.” The officer stated he attempted to conduct a traffic stop, but Anders drove another two blocks and parked at a home. The home belongs to Anders’ grandmother.

MPD stated Anders refused to exit his vehicle and the officer called for backup to the home.

The video shows Anders’ grandmother exiting the home and falling when her grandson is taken into custody. Anders was charged with evading arrest.

Anders’ family held a virtual press conference on Tuesday where they allege the 21-year-old was assaulted while in handcuffs in the back of the police car and they seek to have the charge against him dropped.

Midland Mayor Patrick Payton and District Two Councilman John Norman held a press conference on Wednesday to respond to Anders’ family.

Mayor Payton stated his desire to de-escalate the situation but at the same time confirmed the city will not make the officer’s body and dashcam footage available to the public at this time.

The city did state they have plans to host a town hall meeting along with Police Chief Seth Herman and will invite the community. No date, time, or location information has released regarding the town hall.

Local news media reached out to members of District Two to see their opinion about the arrest. Community members had mixed reactions to the incident. Some believe the police handled themselves well and that Anders and his family overreacted to the situation.

Others stated the police response of drawing multiple guns for an alleged traffic stop was unnecessary. 

“That was totally uncalled for,” Elbert Wilson said. “In some way MPD needs to start being more responsible for their actions, and be more professional.”

“If they say he just ran a stop sign, I don’t see why they drew their guns out on him,” said Jarvis Bell. “He wasn’t armed or anything.” 

Reporters asked Bell if he had personally experienced problems with police as an African American male living in Midland.

“Honestly I haven’t,” he said. “I’ve had a few run-ins with them, but I’ve never had any problems with them like that. I don’t know, I’d probably react like [Anders] did if they pointed their guns at me.”

Wilson reacted to the news of a potential town hall with the following comment:

“Anybody can get on stage and say that they’re going to do this, do that. But what actions will be taken after that? Will you follow through, or is it just in order to calm the storm, due to the fact that you’ve been exposed?”

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If I pointed a gun at someone who hadn't committed a crime, what would my charge be? Attempted assault with a deadly weapon? Why should the law change just because someone is carrying a badge.

Your a special kind of dumb ain’t ya! He was the one running a stop sign and refused to pull over or listen to anything being told to do by PD! They have no way of knowing his intentions at that point so he got exactly what he asked for by doing so!!

The issue with escalation has everything to do with his response to being stopped rather than the fact that he failed to use his turn signal.

Police generally tend to focus on minor infractions like this when they suspect a more serious crime is involved, and from the family's response, my impression is that they all had some experience dealing with law enforcement because of how the drama seemed calculated to increase the liability for police and the way that the suspect knew to ask for a sergeant. This impression may be tainted by my personal experiences of seeing others use such tactics with law enforcement.

I don't really blame the family for taking their kin's side or others for defending him to the extent that it may protect and forward their own collective interests, but as is obvious from the comments on the articles related to this story, most of us understand that not complying with police will result in an escalation on their part of law enforcement.

Personally, I wouldn't want to see tensions rise between people over an incident involving an individual who seemed to display some subtle behaviors in the videos presented a previous article that seem every bit as suspicious as law enforcement claims. I also don't want to see lax law enforcement become a norm, since this ultimately makes everyone less safe.

I also loathe abuses of power, and I don't see that from what has been presented, but if those involved feel that something abusive has taken place, then they should, and do, have every right to fight for what they believe to be true. I would only add that they should be mindful that democracy is a delicate thing, and that pushing a point to its extreme when one may in fact be in the wrong only weakens those foundations we intend to pass on to future generations.

And if we strain those bonds until they break, then history tells us that there may come a time when the only choice the vast majority of people have, regardless of appearance or ancestry, is which masters they'll serve. I know that sounds kind of dramatic, but history has been like that, and it isn't over by any means...

"Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become more corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters." - Benjamin Franklin

Just keeping you filled in on the perspective from Wakanda, conveying a message. "Don't snipe the agitator," or however the saying goes.

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