Black Lives Matter protest outside METRO
HOUSTON (FOX 26) - This time Black Lives Matter activists are outside of METRO’s headquarters, but they won't stay outside if their demands aren't met.
“We demand that they release the video tape from the rail platform like Mayor Turner did in the Alva Braziel case just for transparency just to see what happened. “ says Ashton Woods.
Here's what we know happened. Early in the morning a homeless man named Darrell Giles was asleep at the Burnett Transit center on the near northside. Officers J Warren and D. Reynoso approached to wake him up and tell him to move on. During the encounter Officer Warren allegedly began to beat Giles with a baton. Sources tell FOX 26 News Giles was struck at least a dozen times and Reynoso had to intervene and stop the beating. Giles was taken to jail, then to the hospital. He was later charged with trespassing and resisting arrest.
Metro Police Chief Vera Bumpers says Warren has been suspended without pay and Reynoso is suspended with pay while METRO Police and the Harris County District Attorney's Office investigate.
“That's what's important right now. That we do the right thing no matter what the situation is. that we look at ourselves. Examine if we did something wrong and we'll be transparent about it.” said Bumpers
But METRO will not release the video. Bumpers says it's part of the investigation, an investigation Metro began after a supervisor was reviewing platform videos at the end of the shift. The officer could face criminal charges.
But Woods says the beating is the symptom of a larger disease, abuse of the homeless population by law enforcement.
“This is indicative of what is going on in the in the city of Houston with the homeless population. They are getting pushed further and further out of the city and for what? The 2017 Super Bowl? To make the city look prettier?” asked Woods.
The activists say if Metro doesn’t make the video public by 2pm Monday they will occupy the lobby.