Amid the heartbreaking violence initiated by the police during the Justice for George Floyd protests, a video has gone viral on social media depicting protesters and bystanders attempting to pour milk and water over a child’s face. The 9-year-old child was allegedly pepper-sprayed by police during a protest in Seattle. She can be heard begging and crying for the pain to “stop” while holding onto someone who appears to be her guardian.
The perpetrating officer of the attack supposedly covered his badge in order to avoid being identified, in addition to refusing to provide his badge number, the Daily Dot reported. However, despite this online users were able to identify the officer through the video, in which the filmer approached the suspected officer. Twitter users not only shared his contact information with the Seattle Police Department, identifying him as Jared Campbell but demanded he is held accountable.
“There was a row about two people deep facing the line of officers when it happened, about 100 yards away from the main protest. She got maced by Officer Campbell and ran away to get sprayed down and have milk poured on her eyes when I started recording,” Evan Hreha, a protestor present during the incident told The Stranger.
Trigger warning: the following video is difficult to watch.
Scene from Seattle protest: Girl hit by pepper spray.
— Tarek Fatah (@TarekFatah) May 31, 2020
Campbell’s name trended on Twitter Saturday under the hashtag #JaredCampbell prompting many to condemn the officer on his actions. While some criticized the parents for being a child to the protest in the first place, many came to their support to acknowledge the protest was meant to be peaceful and such an action should not have been taken by the police. Celebrities like Jameela Jamil also shared Campbell’s photo. “OFFICER JARED CAMPBELL pepper-sprayed a 10-year-old little girl at the protest. Did she scare you in your riot gear?” Jamil wrote on Twitter.
OFFICER JARED CAMPBELL pepper sprayed a 10 year old little girl at the protest. Did she scare you in all your riot gear? pic.twitter.com/DRWIQey5Eq
— Jameela Jamil 🌈 (@jameelajamil) May 31, 2020
As a society, we should not be questioning why this child was at a protest but instead why the officer used such unwarranted force. Images of police using violence against peaceful protestors and bystanders are flooding social media. This is not an isolated situation but one of the few that have been recorded.