Officer kneels on pregnant woman’s back during arrest in Missouri

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KMBC) - Activists are calling for a police officer in Kansas City, Missouri, to be fired after video showed him kneel on a pregnant woman’s back as he arrested her.

Protesters gathered in support of 25-year-old Deja Stallings outside Kansas City Police Headquarters on Friday. Cell phone video of the pregnant woman’s arrest Wednesday night showed an officer put his knee to her back as he handcuffed her.

“The most recent act of brutality of a pregnant woman, an unborn child, is yet another example of the culture of brutality, callousness and disregard for the citizens of our community,” said Kevin Woolfolk with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.

Protesters are calling for the officer involved to be fired and for Kansas City Police Chief Richard Smith to resign.

“This cannot and will not be dismissed, this double assault on humanity,” said Rev. Rodney Williams, president of the Kansas City chapter of the NAACP.

Police say the cell phone video doesn’t tell the whole story. They shared surveillance video of the incident Friday.

Officers were trying to arrest a man at a gas station when they say Stallings tried to hinder the arrest. She allegedly grabbed and touched responding officers and was arrested for physically interfering with an arrest.

But the way the incident was handled has deepened a rift when the city is calling for unity to address violence.

“We do not trust them and will not work with them on those matters until we see change and movement to what is called real, respectful collaboration and restorative justice,” said Gwen Grant, president and CEO of Urban League of Greater Kansas City.

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