Black Eastern Illinois University Swimmer Terrorized By Gun-Toting Police
A Black student swimmer from the Eastern Illinois University had a life-threatening encounter with some trigger-happy bacon boys in East Moline, Illinois while returning home from a tournament.
According to NBCNews, 20-year-old Jaylan Butler stepped off of the team bus to stretch his legs when he was accosted by four to six officers barking orders with their guns drawn. Those officers, named in a lawsuit, are East Moline officer Travis Staes, Hampton officer Ethan Bush and Rock Island sheriff’s deputies Jack Asquini and Jason Pena. Jaylan’s lawyer Rachel Murphy says that two other officers were also involved.
According to the lawsuit, the officers shouted at Butler to put his hands up and get down. He complied and did not resist, the suit states.
Several officers forced Butler to the snowy ground as he was handcuffed, with one putting his knee on the student’s back and another pressing on his neck. One of the officers squatted down in front of him, put a gun to his forehead and said, “If you keep moving, I’m going to blow your f—— head off,” the suit says.
To add insult to emotionally traumatic injury, once the team coach scrambled to tell police that Jaylan was NOT a wanted criminal they still kept him cuffed and put him in the back of a squad car.
Here’s what Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker had to say about what’s going happen going forward:
“I’m deeply troubled by what I’ve read about how Jaylan Butler, an African-American athlete at EIU, was mistreated by law enforcement in East Moline,” he said in a Facebook post. “It’s unacceptable for any young person to feel unsafe and disrespected anywhere in this state — but every day, too many young people of color live through it.”
All the police chiefs of the various departments involved passed the buck. East Moline chief Jeff Ramsey says Travis Staes has not faced any disciplinary action. The others simply said their officers got there after East Moline and essentially had nothing to do with Jaylan’s arrest.