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?”
Recommended for You
Get more stories like this by signing up for our daily newsletter, The LIVE! Daily.