Video shows Ridgeland PD dropping off homeless man in Fondren, mayor says

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JACKSON, Mississippi (WLBT) – Officials in the city of Jackson say they finally have evidence for something they have long suspected – police in other jurisdictions are dropping homeless people in the capital.

Video obtained by WLBT on Saturday shows what appears to be a Ridgeland police officer entering the parking lot at Block 2700 of Old Canton Road in Fondren and dropping an individual there.

According to surveillance, a woman got out of the backseat of the cruiser, and as she put her things on the ground, the officer walked away.

The incident occurred on Saturday morning, in the parking lot of a business located at 2727 Vieux Canton.

Jackson’s police say they were then called to Cups, a nearby cafe, to pick up the woman.

JPD spokesman Sam Brown said the department’s crisis response team had been dispatched to the scene. He said the ministry was still studying the matter on Saturday afternoon.

Corporal Ridgeland Justin Crawford said the individual was picked up by a Ridgeland officer along County Line Road earlier today. “He had dealt with the lady on several occasions and she asked to be dropped off (at Fondren),” he said.

Crawford wasn’t sure if the woman was homeless and he didn’t say what she was doing when the officer picked her up.

“She had been in the area a few times and he asked her if she needed a ride,” Crawford said.

WLBT again asked what the woman was doing when she was arrested, and Crawford declined to answer.

He said his lieutenant advised him to only share the information he provided and that additional questions would need to be answered next week.

Jackson Mayor Chokwe Antar said he saw the video and plans to contact Ridgeland Mayor Gene McGee to discuss it.

He also contacted the Mississippi American Civil Liberties Union.

“It is a violation of jurisdiction and a violation of civil liberties,” he said.

He believes the footage is clear evidence that police dropped off a vagrant in the town of Jackson.

The video comes as the city, Hinds County and state work to resolve the county-wide vagrancy issue.

“It was reported that this has been going on for a long time,” Lumumba said. “This is the first time that we have received a video. This is proof of what people saw.

Copyright 2020 WLBT. All rights reserved.

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