A police officer in Ohio has been placed on administrative leave after a video emerged of him punching a woman several times in an incident that began over an extra slice of cheese on a Big Mac.
Laticka Hancock, 31, returned to the McDonald’s restaurant after her burger did not have the extra cheese she paid for. The restaurant called police, and when they arrived, Hancock refused to provide her identification and was placed under arrest. During the arrest, she resisted, and Sergeant Todd Stanley of the Butler police force hit her with an “open palm strike” several times.
Sgt. Stanley has served on the Butler police force for 22 years and his personnel file does not contain any formal reprimands. However, Hancock and her attorney, Michael Wright, have called for Stanley to be fired and charged with assault. They have also criticized the restaurant for calling police over the dispute.
The incident has raised questions about the use of force and the appropriateness of police involvement in minor disputes. It is unclear at this time what disciplinary action will be taken against Sgt. Stanley, but it is clear that the incident is part of a larger conversation about the role of police in our society.
The case has been referred to the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation, and Wright has said he will take the case to court if necessary. In the meantime, the video of the incident has sparked outrage and calls for justice from both members of the public and civil rights activists.