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Dajerria Becton, Turning An Act Of Violence Into Kindness For Her Community
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Dajerria Becton, Turning An Act Of Violence Into Kindness For Her Community

Dajerria Becton was only 15 when the video of her being tackled by a police officer at a pool party in McKinney went viral in 2015.


Social media was left in shock after watching the young woman be forced down to the pavement and dragged by her hair. After Officer Eric Casebolt wasn't indicted for his brutal act of force, Dajerria and her legal guardian took matters into their own hands by suing the city of McKinney and Officer Eric Casebolt for $5 million last year for his "excessive force" and holding her without "probable cause".

It was recently announced that the case settled for $148,000 in response to McKinney mayor George Fuller calling Dajerria "a verbally abusive, disobedient girl." Dajerria's attorney, Kim T. Cole clap backed and spoke of Casebolt to Teen Vogue:

"He was the one who was verbally abusive. 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'? 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."

"They appeared as a threat" has become a common justification used by officers involved in cases of excessive force and police brutality. The false claims against Black women and men lead to arrests that inevitably causes trauma in the process.

Dejarria was in the public eye and under its scrutiny after the video went viral. She even told Cole that since the arrest she hadn't been swimming.

"This girl will never be the same. Anyone who has been a teenage Black girl knows how hard it is, and to have this type of negative publicity, in your bikini, shown all over the world. It tore her up. We don't know who she would have been had this not happened."

But, the now the high school graduate and soon community college student is turning her past horror show into a celebration.

She will be hosting a pool party on June 23 along with activists DeRay McKesson and Shaun King to raise money for teenagers in McKinney to receive scholarships.

 

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