The Orlando Police Department has been put on the spot after a pair of their officers pulled over a car for what they described as a “routine stop.” Due to the details surrounding the stop, which was all caught on camera and posted to the Orlando Police Department YouTube page, the officers involved have been accused of racial profiling.
Aramis Ayala was the driver behind the wheel. She also happens to be the only black state attorney in Florida.
The video of Orlando officers pulling over Ayala runs almost three minutes long. After they realize who they pulled over, you can see how quickly the officers’ demeanor changed.
The whole encounter was recorded on the body camera of one of the officers involved in the traffic stop. According to CNN, the incident took place last month, but it wasn’t until Wednesday that footage surfaced online.
Some who watched the video footage of Aramis Ayala being pulled over believe that the state attorney was being racially profiled. Others admonished Ayala for being short with the officers during the stop.
When she was pulled over, Ayala is very obviously irritated by the questions and the stop itself. She asked why she was being pulled over, only to be told that it was a routine traffic stop. After she showed identification, the officers asked where she worked. At that point, Ayala identified herself as a state attorney.
— Monivette Cordeiro (@monivettec) July 12, 2017
The officer explained to Ayala that they had run her license plates but they came back blank. It was a situation they had never dealt with before and didn’t know what to do, so they pulled the state attorney over to make sure that the car was not stolen.
Aramis Ayala has spoken out about the June 19 traffic stop in the time since the YouTube video went viral. She and the Orlando Police Department have said that the stop “appears consistent with Florida law.”
— CNN (@CNN) July 13, 2017
In the wake of the outrage over the Aramis Ayala traffic stop video, the Orlando Police Department has issued a statement.
“In regards to the video, which was released by the Orlando Police Department last month, the officers stated the tag did not come back as registered to any vehicle. As you can see in the video, the window tint was dark, and officers would not have been able to tell who, or how many people, were in the vehicle.”
Despite the legality of Ayala’s traffic stop, she has made it clear that some good can come of it. Ayala said she intends to use the stop as a “teachable moment.” She also released a statement that can be seen in its entirety above.
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