Police held an Arkansas family at gunpoint in Texas after running the wrong license plate number, leading them to believe the car was stolen, according to bodycam footage obtained by Law and Crime.
An officer in Frisco, Texas, ran the plates on the family’s black Dodge Charger and found the car had been listed as stolen in Arizona, Law and Crime reported Tuesday. But the officer said she ran the plates for the wrong state by mistake. “It looks like I made a mistake, I ran it AZ for Arizona, instead of AR,” she can be heard saying in the bodycam footage.
A male officer can be seen pointing his gun at the family’s vehicle, ordering the family to exit the vehicle and lift their shirts and reveal their waistbands in an attempt to search for weapons.
The driver of the vehicle assured the officers the car belonged to her. An officer questioned her registration, asking her why it wasn’t associated with her vehicle. “I’m a nurse, I’ve never done anything in my life,” she told the police.
The situation escalated when officers asked the driver if she had any weapons in the car, and she said she did. “I’m licensed. It’s locked in there. … It’s in the glove department,” the woman said. While the rest of her family — her son, husband and nephew — were still in the car, officers slowly commanded the rest of them to exit the vehicle, the bodycam footage shows.
“Occupants of the car,” one officer says roughly eight minutes and 40 seconds into the video, “lean your heads outside the car. We know there is a gun in there. If you reach in that car, you may get shot, so be careful.”
During the visibly emotional ordeal, the driver’s husband broke down while explaining the family was on their way to a basketball game. “We’re just here for a basketball game, don’t do this to my son,” he can be heard saying.
Eventually, a fellow police officer seemingly realized the initial officer’s alleged mistake. The police explained the situation to the family. “It could have went all wrong for us,” the man inside the car responded. “They yelled out ‘don’t move or we’ll shoot,’ then I dropped my phone, if I went to reach for my phone we could have all got killed.”