Tennessee — Somerville — A young Black man from Tennessee who was violently arrested for supposed traffic offenses stated he believed he was targeted because of his race and the fact that he was driving a good car.
Outside the Fayette County courthouse where Brandon Calloway was supposed to appear on charges filed against him in July, he and members of his family spoke with an Associated Press reporter. The court hearing has been delayed to November 28.
Police in Oakland, California, detained 26-year-old Calloway on charges of disobeying a stop sign, speeding, disorderly conduct, and evading arrest. Video footage of the incident leading to his detention went viral, showing police officers following him around his house, trying to stun him, and beating him bloody before taking him away.
While the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation is looking into the arrest, one police officer has been paid leave. Upon completion of the TBI investigation, the state police agency will forward its findings to the district attorney, who will then determine whether or not to file criminal charges against the officers. On Monday, I called the Oakland Police Department to get their take, but they didn’t answer.
A police affidavit states that Calloway disregarded a stop sign on July 16 at 7:30 p.m. The police later caught him going 32 mph in a 20 mph zone. Before the time an officer tried to perform a traffic stop. According to the affidavit, Calloway kept driving until he came to a residence, stopped in the driveway, and raced inside.
According to the affidavit, a second officer arrived to speak with Calloway and the others afterward. Calloway heard the police say they needed to detain him and retreated inside. When the police broke down the door, they found Calloway hiding in the upper bedroom. According to the affidavit, police officers broke through the door, shocked him with a Taser, and started beating him with a baton.
The fight occurred in Oakland, a tiny town roughly 30 miles east of Memphis. Notary public company owner Calloway claims the abuse resulted in stitches in his skull, difficulty speaking, and memory loss. He claims that if he were white, he never would have been pulled up in his 2020 Chevrolet Camaro.
Calloway explained his good fortune: “I just happened to get stopped in a nice car, and my dad lives in a lovely neighborhood.” The single wrongdoing occurred at that precise location.
Ed Calloway, Calloway’s father, echoed these sentiments, saying that the incident “exposed the issues that we still have with the relationship between police and young African-American boys, and this underlying fear of being caught up in this circumstance.”
According to Ed Calloway, “if he been white, no, he would never have gotten pulled over,” and the issue would not have progressed to the point it did. As Ed Calloway, claims the police broke into his home without a warrant.
“It was my house, my door they broke down,” he added, adding that his traumatized daughter had seen “her brother’s blood all over the floor, all over the walls, throughout the house.”
Brandon Calloway has stated his desire to have the cops responsible for his arrest face consequences. He said he is healing well and making progress in therapy but still experiences “very awful anxiety” whenever a police officer is in the vicinity.
Andre Wharton, his attorney, has said that he wants the TBI inquiry to be open and honest so that the Calloways can find closure following the “disproportionate response” by police. Wharton explains that closure is achieved when individuals see that a system is transparent, honest, and accountable, functioning as intended.