Tamiko Mitchell speaks on what happened with Topeka Police officer, causing injuries

Published: Sep. 2, 2020 at 7:24 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The City of Topeka and the Topeka Police Department are investigating what happened when Tamiko Mitchell was arrested August 23rd.

Tamiko filed a complaint, alleging the officer used excessive force, causing injuries.

Tamiko Mitchell says she was headed to pick up her daughter from work just before 10 P.M. on August 23rd. Then, she was pulled over for running a red light, and told the officer her license was suspended.

“He went back to get my information and he just came back and opened my door and demanded I cut my car off.” Mitchell explained.

Tamiko Mitchell says she turned off her car, unbuckled her seat belt and started to get out. She says what the officer did next went too far.

“I stepped out of the car and as I took my initial step, one foot out on the ground, he just grabbed me, grabbed my arm and twisted it, I have previous injuries and that’s what was hurting while I was asking to let me turn around,” Mitchell continued. “I was handcuffed after he body slammed me, he put me in a full nelson and swung around and body slammed me face first.”

Mitchell says a female officer also was on the scene, but did not react. Then, Mitchell said she requested a supervisor.

“‘She looks just fine to me,’ those were his exact words, but I got a fractured nose and my eyes, so I’m not just fine,” she said.

Then, Mitchell was taken to a local hospital by ambulance. She says she’s seen the body camera footage of the officer’s interaction with her.

“It was more heartening just to know that he didn’t care, I didn’t matter,” she said. “I’m a human being, I’m somebody’s mother, I’m a grandmother, I’m somebody’s friend, sister, I’m somebody.”

Chief Bill Cochran has said the officer felt Mitchell was resisting arrest, and while intentionally taking her to the ground, they went off a curb.

“Evidence speaks for itself, a slip and fall would not result in fractured, severely damaged eyes, or the trauma,” Mitchell’s attorney, LaRonna Lassiter Saunders said.

Saunders says they want the city and police department to take action, “if you have an officer who is not that is not meeting the expectations, and these should not be Black Lives Matter expectations, these should not be people of color expectations, this should be City of Topeka, we want our police officers to be honorable.”

“We want to make sure that we’re not scared in our own backyards to pick up our own daughters from work, and if we are pulled over that we’re safe,” Pastor Gregory Bland Jr. added.

“I just want people to care, just be humane, that’s all,” Mitchell said.

Mitchell’s lawyers and advocates say they want it to be clear on how they are not against the police. They want disciplinary action to be taken against the officer involved.

Lassiter-Saunders also said she has spoken with Chief Cochran about the incident.

Pastor Bland Jr. says they have set up a GoFundMe page for Tamiko Mitchell.

13 News spoke with the Topeka Police Department on the use of force, and Chief Cochran explains the investigation process following the use of force complaint.

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