Bloomington Police Explain Juvenile Restraint Incident Amid Scrutiny Over Viral Video

Staff report

Bloomington, IN – July 3, 2024

The Bloomingtonian reached out to the Bloomington Police Department Wednesday for information after the circulation of video clips showing police officers restraining a juvenile on the city’s westside. The videos, shared with The Bloomingtonian by local residents, depict a tense scene involving police and EMS workers.

According to Bloomington Police Department (BPD), the juvenile said he was experiencing shortness of breath while being transported after an arrest, and EMS was called.

On a video, filmed in the area of 11th and Fairview, and posted by IU on Strike, a person can be heard saying, “I can’t breathe.”

The Bloomingtonian attended the daily briefing at the BPD to gather details about the incident. Captain Ryan Pedigo provided a comprehensive timeline, clarifying the events leading up to and during the recorded incident, now being shared on social media.

Incident Timeline

According to the BPD, on July 2nd, at approximately 9:25 p.m., officers responded to a disturbance call near W 13th St and N Illinois St. Initial reports indicated a fight involving around 10 people. Earlier in the evening, at about 8:10 p.m., officers had responded to a report of an argument involving firearms in the same area, but found no active disturbance upon arrival.

Upon returning to the area for the second call, a security guard informed an officer that he had witnessed a group of Black males gathering and fighting after the initial police departure. The guard identified two males who had been involved in the fight, one of whom had displayed a handgun.

Police Engagement and Arrest

Officers approached the identified juveniles who initially attempted to walk away, according to police. When officers detained the 13-year-old, he resisted, leading to a struggle on the ground. The juvenile repeatedly reached for his waistband, prompting officers to restrain him forcibly. The second juvenile, a 14-year-old, attempted to interfere with the arrest and was also detained after resisting.

A search revealed that the 13-year-old had a toy replica Glock handgun in his waistband. During the struggle, two officers sustained injuries.

While being transported to the police department, the 13-year-old complained of shortness of breath. Officers stopped and called for an ambulance near 11th St and Fairview St. As EMS assessed the juvenile, his family arrived and began confronting the officers. Amidst the chaos, the juvenile tried to escape from the squad car, leading to further restraint by the police. A 14-year-old female relative was also detained after attempting to intervene and allegedly threatening to stab someone.

Charges Filed

The detained juveniles were referred to juvenile probation with the following charges:

  • 13-year-old male: Two counts of Intimidation, level 6 felony; Resisting Law Enforcement Resulting in Injury, level 6 felony.
  • 14-year-old male: Resisting Law Enforcement Resulting in Injury, level 6 felony.
  • 14-year-old female: Intimidation, level 6 felony; Unlawful Encroachment, class C misdemeanor; Resisting Law Enforcement, class A misdemeanor.

Additional Context

The Bloomingtonian learned that one of the arrested juveniles had threatened a community member with death prior to police arrival. This information has been kept vague to protect the individual’s identity.

Rate this post

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 4.3 / 5. Vote count: 35

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

Liked it? Take a second to support The Bloomingtonian on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!