Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett posted on twitter that Las Vegas police arrested him and used excessive force “for doing nothing more than being a black man at the wrong place at the wrong time.”
The Las Vegas officers had a different story to tell during a press conference. They said there is “no evidence” of racial profiling and laid out several crucial details the pro-footballer left out, which significantly changed the story.
Here’s how Bennett, who with Kaepernick has protested the national anthem, recalled what happened:
On Saturday, August 26, 2016, I was in Las Vegas to attend the Mayweather-McGregor fight on my day off. After the fight while heading back to my hotel several hundred people heard what sounded like gun shots. Like many of the people in the area I ran away from the sound, looking for safety. Las Vegas police officers singled me out and pointed their guns at me for doing nothing more than being a black man at the wrong place at the wrong time.
Bennett goes on to claim the officers used excessive force, one which allegedly told him he’d “blow my f***ing head off” and “forcefully jamm[ing] his knee” into his back; also stating the force was “unbearable”.
After being arrested and led to the back of the patrol car, Bennett was positively identified and the officers determined he was not a threat.
Representative Kevin McMahill of Las Vegas law enforcement disclosed the context of the athlete’s temporary arrest.
“I can tell you as I stand here today, I see no evidence of [racial profiling]. I see no evidence that race played any role in this incident,” said McMahill.
“As [officers] moved toward the nightclub, an individual later identified as Bennett was seen crouched down behind a gaming machine as the officers approached,” said McMahill. “Once Bennett was in the officer’s view, he quickly ran out the south doors, jumped over a wall onto Flamingo Road East of Las Vegas Boulevard into traffic.”
The Daily Wire reports, ‘Bennett’s suspicious actions, not his race, is why he was detained, the officer explained. (The detail of Bennett running when the cops appeared also aligns with a report by TMZ Sports.)’
“Due to Bennett’s actions, and the information the officers had at the time, they believed that Bennett may have been involved in the shooting and they gave chase,” said McMahill. “Bennett was placed in handcuffs and detained while officers determined whether or not he was involved in the incident.”
“Mr. Bennett, at the scene, had the incident explained to him by a supervisor and he said that he understood and that he had no problem with what the officers did,” added McMahill.
The only thing which the department is still investigating is if the police officer’s threat to the athlete was actually made.
Bennett claims the “system failed me” and all the more validates his reasons to protest the United States; you know despite the fact that he was apprehended for running from the scene:
I have always held the strong conviction that protesting or just standing up for justice is simply the right thing to do. This fact is unequivocally, without question why before every game I sit during the national anthem … because equality doesn’t live in this country and no matter how much money you make, what job title you have, or how much you give, when you are seen as a “n*****,” you will be treated that way.
The system failed me. I can only imagine what Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, and Charleena Lyles felt.
The football player may pursue a civil rights lawsuit. His full rant is below:
— Michael Bennett (@mosesbread72) September 6, 2017