A police body camera footage showing the traffic stop of a black Florida state attorney has many outlets crying racism and racial profiling.
The Orlando Police Department released body camera footage showing two officers stopping Aramis Ayala, a black Florida state attorney, after they ran her license plate June 19. The video made the rounds on news outlets Wednesday, with many of them rushing to hold the video as further proof of racial profiling of black Americans.
The footage, however, showed a stop that went smoothly. The two officers pulled Ayala over after they ran her tags, and they didn’t get a result, according to the footage. Both officers seemed unaware that they had pulled over a state attorney until she pulled out her license.
“What was the tag run for?” Ayala asks.
“Oh we run tags through all the time, whether it’s a traffic light and that sort of stuff; that’s how we figure out if cars are stolen and that sort of thing,” the officer responds. Ayala asks for their names and ID, which the officer writes down for her.
He then lets her go, saying “Have a good day!”
When writing up the video, many outlets characterized the officers as “awkward” or “stumbling” through the encounter.
“In regards to the video, which was released by the Orlando Police Department last month, the officers stated the tag did not come back as registered to any vehicle. As you can see in the video, the window tint was dark, and officers would not have been able to tell who, or how many people, were in the vehicle,” the department said in a statement.
Ayala also released a public statement, saying she had broken no laws before she got pulled over. Her license plate was registered correctly and her car window tint was at the legal limit, she said.
“Although the traffic stop appears to be consistent with Florida law,” her statement read. “My goal is to have a constructive and mutually respectful relationship between law enforcement and the community.”
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