A pair of white New Jersey cops are investigating a 14-year-old black boy who was pinned to the ground, kneeled on his back and arrested after a fight with a white teen they let go.
A disturbing video footage shows two teenagers exchanging words on Feb. 13 at the Bridgewater Mall before their altercation escalated into violence.
A white teenager is seen pushing a black teenager before being hit in a fight recorded by several teenagers at a popular shopping mall.
Seconds later, an officer from the Bridgewater Police Department arrived and dragged the white boy away, while her partner grabbed the black teenager and knocked him to the ground.
A white teenager, who was identified as a 15-year-old named Joey, was taken to a nearby couch, but the black teenager was led away in handcuffs.
Before he was lifted off the ground, a female police officer placed her knee on his back as he lay face down on the ground.
“Hey, that’s because he’s black,” said the girl filming the scene. “For racial reasons.”
A female officer presses her knee to a boy’s back during an arrest.
A widely circulated video shows two teenagers arguing at a mall in New Jersey.
The argument turned violent when a white teenager shoved a black teenager, resulting in a fistfight.
A white boy involved in the fight accused the police of mistreating a black teenager.
“I knew it was wrong and I knew there would be problems when they did it,” Joey told local news station PIX 11. “They didn’t go for me.”
He said he couldn’t understand why he wasn’t arrested too.
“I didn’t understand why,” said the teenager. “I even offered to put on handcuffs.”
Joey’s friend Sienna Freidinger, who filmed the fight on video, said she also felt the officer’s response was unfair.
“The black child was the only one they tried to capture,” she told the publication.
Teenagers watch and film the boys fighting at the mall on Feb. 13 before police arrive to separate them.
When the cops arrive, one pulls the white boy out of the way, while the other knocks the black boy down and arrests him.
The white teenager said he also offered to be arrested but refused after the black teenager was handcuffed and taken away.
The viral video sparked a reaction from New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, who took to Twitter to express his concern.
“While the investigation is still gathering facts about this incident, I am deeply concerned that this video appears to be racially disparate,” Murphy wrote on Twitter. We are committed to building trust between law enforcement and the people they serve.”
The Bridgewater Police Department sent media requests to the city, which did not respond to a DailyMail.com request for comment.
The Department released a statement on Twitter, saying in part that it is “thankful to our community partners and [looked] forward to continue building our positive relationship.
“We acknowledge that this video has upset members of our community and call for an internal investigation,” the statement said. “Officers were able to quickly respond to this incident and prevent it from escalating thanks to the tip we received from the community.”
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said he was “deeply concerned that the videos appear to be racially disparate.”
The Department released a statement on Twitter, saying in part that it is “thankful to our community partners and [looked] forward to further building our positive relationship’
The Department has asked the Somerset County Attorney’s Office to assist in the investigation.
Several people expressed outrage at the arrest on social media.
“White boy provoked it but black boy was arrested,” Kim Lively wrote on Facebook. “How damn typical.”
“I can’t wrap my head around this,” Lynn McDowell wrote on the social media. “It couldn’t be clearer. If no one notices anything, then these are just evil people.