Clarence Crawford has filed a lawsuit in federal court for excessive force and racial profiling against the city of New Braunfels, Texas, former officer Kaleb Meyer, and former police chief Tom Wibert. Crawford, a Black man, was pulled over while driving home from work and forcefully pulled out of his car at gunpoint for a dirty license plate.
On January 15, 2020 former officer Meyer activated his emergency lights on Interstate 35 behind Crawford, who pulled into a parking lot. In a video released by city officials, Meyer approached Crawford’s car with his gun drawn (against police protocol), although Crawford’s hands were placed visibly on the dash and on the steering wheel. Meyer forcefully pulled Crawford out of the car, ordered him to the ground, drove his knee into Crawford’s back, then tasered Crawford. The situation was de-escalated when a female officer arrived on the scene.
Crawford’s lawsuit alleges Meyer racially profiled him and notes that Meyer was able to read Crawford’s license plate to dispatchers twice despite reporting a dirty license plate. Crawford lost his job after being arrested and was charged for suspicion of fleeing from an officer and interfering with public duties. These charges remained for nine months until a prosecutor filed a motion that cited Crawford for being “overly dramatic” while requesting a judge drop all charges. The lawsuit also notes that Crawford suffered mental anguish and has been diagnosed with anxiety. New Braunfels city officials say they haven’t been notified of the lawsuit.
Why We Need To Know:
Another innocent Black man has been brutalized on video and suffered losses as a result. Once again, the department responsible has done absolutely nothing. Both Meyer and former police chief Wibert resigned months after the incident.