Newly released footage shows Colorado resident Shataeah Kelly hogtied, faced down and begging for help in the backseat of a police vehicle.
The incident in question took place on August 27, 2019 near Aurora, Colorado. Kelly was allegedly arrested for refusing to stop fighting another woman nearby. Former Aurora Police Department Officer Levi Huffine then handcuffed the woman and escorted her to the back of his police vehicle. After getting into the car, Kelly, who says she was intoxicated at the time, was able to move around and remove her seatbelt. After doing so, Huffine cuffs her ankles as well.
While laying in the back of the car with her ankles and hands shackled, Kelly begged him not to ride to the station in that position. Eventually, Kelly falls off the backseat and her head falls behind Huffine's seat with her legs in the air. She can be heard saying that she can't believe that she is “suffering like this for being Black." In the moments after falling, Kelly told Huffine that she couldn't breathe properly and that she feared she would break her neck.
"I don’t want to die like this. I’m about to break my neck," Kelly said.
“How many times do I have to beg you master? Master, I’ll be good."
After arriving at the police facility, another officer found Kelly on the floor of the backseat and said, “That didn’t look pleasant.”
Huffine responded to the officer by saying that she was moving around in the backseat during the ride. Shortly after learning of the incident, Aurora Police Chief Vanessa Wilson, who was promoted after the death of Elijah McClain. fired him.
“He’s lucky she did not die in the back seat of that car, because he would be, in my opinion, in an orange jumpsuit right now,” Wilson said
“As an African-American female, she denigrates herself to the point she actually calls him ‘master.' To me, that is disgusting."
Huffine appeared before the Aurora Civil Service Commission on Wednesday to attempt to regain his job.
“She was not obeying my lawful orders,” Huffine told the commission.
“My ultimate goal was to place her in handcuffs and take her into custody with the least amount of force, injury."
Huffine is scheduled to appear before the commission again on Thursday. The Aurora Civil Service Commission will have the final say as to whether he can rejoin the police force.
Photo: Getty Images