A former NFL player kicked up his fair share of controversy by saying he was left paralyzed in fear after having an officer point a gun to his head during an ordinary traffic stop. Since that time, police have released dash cam video of the incident that ultimately sheds an entirely different light on the matter.
According to Houston Oilers player Lamar Lathon, police had pulled him over in Pearland, Texas for speeding with the officer needlessly drawing his firearm and pointing it at his head, leaving him fearing for his life. “Completely terrified,” he said. “This is a situation where I was obeying a command, and it quickly got out of control.”
Unfortunately for him, police have since had the opportunity to tell their side of the story, and it’s all backed by dash cam video.
In the clip, the officer can be seen approaching the former NFL player’s window before asking for the driver’s license and proof of insurance, but this is where things went wrong. As can be heard in the video, Lathon reached under his seat at the time, prompting understandable concern to arise from the officer.
At the time, the officer ordered Lathon not to reach under the seat, to which he didn’t comply. The officer continues to tell the idiot “don’t reach under the seat” another two times before he unholsters his weapon.
It is only at that point that the idiot becomes aware of the seriousness of the situation, but he obviously was still a bit non-compliant as the officer continues to instruct the man not to reach under the seat another four times. That’s 7 in total for those of you trying to keep count.
Along with the video the Pearland Police Department released on their Facebook page, they also explained, “Based on review of the video footage, it is the position of the Pearland Police Department that the response of the officers involved in this traffic stop was professional and within both the law and policies of this agency.” I don’t think anyone could disagree with that.
The officer was kind, courteous, and simply ensuring self-preservation. Once the threat had neutralized, the officer simply placed his gun back in his holster and continued with his professional duties. Later in the video, the officer asks Lathon to step out of the car to search under the seat, at which point the entitled prick already demonstrates ignorance on what just happened.
Saying that the officer pulled the gun on him for no reason, the officer simply states that he’s taking the incident out of context.
Now, there are a few things worth noting here, with the first few being more rhetorical questions than anything else. I mean, how dumb do you have to be to reach in a space that the officer can’t see while he’s standing right next to you? Secondly, why is this man not listening to an officer the first time he says something?
These are common sense practices when dealing with police. If you need to retrieve the items the officer is requesting from a place not visible to the officer, state that and ask permission before reaching for what is unknown to the officer.
However, for this entitled piece of crap to come forward and try to tarnish a police officer is beyond ridiculous. Leave it to a liberal to cry wolf when they’re the ones that are actually in the wrong. Here’s a tip — if you don’t want an officer to unholster his gun, follow police orders the first time and don’t do something that threatens them personally.
Police Release Dash-Cam Footage of Traffic StopThe Pearland Police Department was made aware of reports to local media that one of its officers may have acted inappropriately during an early morning traffic stop on September 1, 2015. In response to the local reports and to remain transparent, the dash cam footage of the two officers involved in the incident will be released in its entirety both to the public as well as the media venues requesting it. The traffic stop occurred on September 1, 2015 at approximately 1:15 a.m., ending in the parking lot of a gas station at the intersection of Shadow Creek Parkway (FM 2234) at Almeda Road (FM 521). The driver was identified as Lamar Lathon DOB12.23.67. In order to better illustrate the course of events, a timeline corresponding to the time provided by the in-car video is provided below: 1:12 a.m. – The Pearland Police vehicle was eastbound on Shadow Creek Parkway west of Kingsley Drive and made a U-turn in order to follow the westbound vehicle that was observed speeding.1:14 a.m. – The officer in a marked Pearland Police vehicle was behind the suspect vehicle stopped for the red light in the turn lane for southbound traffic onto Almeda Road. It appeared as if the driver was on a phone – the lit screen was clearly visible through the rear window.1:15 a.m. – When the light turned green, the officer activated the emergency overhead lights to initiate a traffic stop. The suspect vehicle pulled into the lit parking lot of the convenience store. Upon approaching the vehicle, the driver appeared to be talking to someone as the officer introduced himself and asked for the driver’s license and proof of financial responsibility. In the video, the officer was then clearly heard giving the driver three distinct orders not to reach under his seat. When the orders were ignored by the driver, the officer unholstered his weapon and held it at a low ready position near the driver’s door in preparation for the possibility of the driver drawing a weapon from under the seat. The officer was clearly heard repeating the same order four more times for the driver to not reach under the seat. When the driver’s hands were in view and the officer could see that they held a wallet, the officer re-holstered his weapon and proceeded with the traffic stop. 1:16 a.m. – The driver can be heard speaking to someone and said, “Man, I’m not worried about no policeman talkin’ about killing me, (name redacted), I’m just trying to figure out why he’s pulling me over.” The officer explained that the reason for the stop was speeding. In response to the driver’s comment regarding the officer taking so long to make the traffic stop, the officer explained that he had to turn around and catch up to the driver. 1:18 a.m. – The officer returned to his vehicle to complete the citation and await a secondary officer. 1:24 a.m. – After a secondary officer arrived, the primary officer returned to the stopped vehicle in order to continue his traffic stop. The primary officer asked the driver several times to exit the vehicle. The driver expressed concern and said, “With all the stuff that’s happening and I’m a big guy and you’re a little guy.” The officer pointed out that they were in a lit parking lot. The driver continued by pointing out that the officer had already pulled his TASER out on him; the officer clarified that, “No, I pulled my gun on you because you were reaching under the seat.” 1:25 a.m. – After the driver exited the vehicle, the officer explained that he would search the car for weapons since the officer did not know what the driver had been reaching for. When the driver objected and made movement back toward the car, the officer raised his hand to stop the driver from returning to the vehicle prior to his search. The driver then stood by with a secondary officer while the primary officer conducted a brief search of the driver’s area of the vehicle for weapons; the search lasted approximately twelve seconds.1:26 a.m. – The primary officer continued to explain the reason for the search and pointed out that the driver should have told him what he was reaching for. The officer continued to issue a speeding citation. While doing so, the officer found it necessary to repeat himself three times in order for the driver to provide his contact number for the citation. 1:27 a.m. – The driver mentioned his deceased mother and the officer stated, “I’m sorry to hear that.” The driver used profanity several times while addressing his concern over the citation. The driver received the citation and immediately started walking toward his vehicle and there was another terse interaction as driver’s license was returned. The traffic stop concluded and the driver was released at the scene.Based on review of the video footage, it is the position of the Pearland Police Department that the response of the officers involved in this traffic stop was professional and within both the law and policies of this agency. The primary officer was tactically aware, maintained control of the scene and attempted to de-escalate a volatile situation brought on by a driver who refused to follow directions and whose primary complaint seemed to be the issuance of a citation. The citation received by the driver is a matter to be addressed by the Pearland Municipal Court.
Posted by Pearland Police Department on Thursday, September 3, 2015