Geneva Smith is an 84-year-old Muskogee, Oklahoma resident who was asleep in her bed when police busted in her front door.
When Smith asked why the police were in her home, officers gave the elderly woman forty seconds to process that they were yelling an order at her to turn around before using pepper-spray on the clearly unarmed woman in her own living room. She was wearing a nightgown and head scarf and had no weapons concealed in them. Geneva Smith was arrested for asking why her home was being invaded.
Fox 23 reports that Smith was not the original target of the police. Her son had failed to fully stop at a stop sign, so police followed him home. Instead of pulling over for the police, Smith’s son ran into his home, where he lives with his 84-year-old mother. When her son refused to answer the door for police, they busted in the door and entered Smith’s home.
All because her son failed to fully stop at a stop sign.
Police tazed Smith’s son, but the noise woke the elderly woman, who rushed into the living room to see what was wrong. When she entered the room, asking what was happening, police gave her around forty seconds to turn around as she was being ordered. Instead of an officer walking over to her and trying to deescalate the situation for the poor, panicked Geneva Smith, she was pepper-sprayed, held down, and handcuffed.
Smith sat in jail long enough to have a panic attack, at which time she was taken to the hospital. Smith plans to sue the local police department as a result of their excessive use of forced against the 84-year-old unarmed woman.
The Muskogee Police Department released the body camera footage in an attempt at transparency, but it only made them look worse. The woman is clearly seen to be no threat to police officers, and it’s obvious that an officer trained in deescalation techniques with a small amount of patience could have diffused the situation without harming or arresting the poor woman. An internal investigation is currently underway.
For Fox 23’s segment on this story, see video below:
Featured image screengrab via YouTube