Two separate groups consisting of Black men and children were confronted by Fort Worth, Texas, police over the weekend after patrolling the same neighborhood where a mother and her two daughters were arrested last month.
The unplanned patrol was stopped only 20 minutes in after neighbors, concerned for their safety, called authorities.
In the first group, there were about 20 children and teens led by an older male, reported Fox 4 News. The group arrived in the suburban neighborhood by bus and were prepared to defend the woman and her two daughters, according to the outlet.
The second group consisted of two or three armed men carrying assault rifles. Neighbors called police after allegedly hearing one of the men shouting through a loud speaker and another yelling profanities as they walked through the neighborhood.
Footage posted on Facebook from Saturday’s encounter showed police confronting the second group with their guns drawn. Officers also handcuffed these men for a while but made no arrests.
The patrol was not connected to Jacqueline Craig or her daughters, family spokesperson Roderick Smith told Fox 4. But Smith said he did not see a problem with the men supporting the women.
In late December, Craig was arrested after confronting a white neighbor who admitted to assaulting her 7-year-old son for littering near his property. Her daughters, 19-year-old Brea Hymond and an unnamed 15-year-old, also were arrested. The 15-year-old was released immediately, but Craig and Hymond were charged with resisting arrest, interference with an investigation and failure to have ID.
“I didn’t find anything alarming myself,” Smith says. “I didn’t find anything out of the norm. Police officers have guns, but they don’t protect.
“She said it meant a lot to have complete strangers come and try to protect her, when the individuals that she pays, which is the Fort Worth Police Department, failed to do so.”
Officer William Martin, who was involved in Craig’s arrest, was suspended 10 days without pay, according to Atlanta Black Star. Smith implied that if Martin was reassigned to a different neighborhood, the armed protest would never have happened.
“If a predator knows where you stay, you’re still at risk, right?” Smith says. “The predator, the officer, knows where she stays. So, they want to make sure she’s protected.”