The family of Dajerria Becton, who was 15 when a cop slammed her to the ground at a pool party, has received $184,850 in a settlement. But recent comments from the mayor suggest the city has more work to do.
The settlement was between Becton’s family and the city of McKinney, Texas, and the police officer who brutalized Becton, Eric Casebolt.
$148,850 of the money will go to Becton, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Just before the settlement was announced, though, McKinney Mayor Greg Fuller called Becton “a verbally abusive, disobedient girl.” He described Casebolt as “a reckless, overly stimulated, excessive force wielding cop.”
Fuller referenced the 2015 pool party incident between “a reckless, overly stimulated, excessive force wielding cop” and “a verbally abusive, disobedient girl.”
Fuller made the comments in an email exchange with activist Dominique Alexander, Dallas News reported.
“For this mayor to come out today and say that this girl was verbally abusive to this officer as if this justifies his behavior is ridiculous,” Kim Cole, Becton’s attorney, said to the publication. “It is absolutely ridiculous.”
“I’m not going to say the mayor is racist, but he is certainly singing the tune,” she added. “He’s certainly reiterating the rhetoric that we hear all across this country. I suggest he gets his facts straight before he makes statements that will disparage a teen that has already been ravaged by the system.”
“You’re not afraid of white people who pose an actual threat, who walk out of shooting up a church or a school without a scratch on them, but you are afraid of a Black girl and her ‘tone'” Cole said to Teen Vogue. “Watch the video she never used a cuss word, never talked back to him all she did was repeatedly ask someone to call her mama,” the lawyer says.
Casebolt was not fired for the incident but resigned four days later. He was first placed on administrative leave.
But Becton is celebrating the victory and her high school graduation this weekend with appropriately enough a pool party. Cole told Teen Vogue she wants it to be a special experience for the now 18-year-old.
My goal is to redo this experience,” Cole said. Dajerria recently told me she hasn’t been swimming since the incident.”