While outside agitators attempt to gin up racial tensions in McKinney, Texas, after a viral video showed police officer David Eric Casebolt aggressively subduing a 15-year-old black girl in a bikini, the media is interviewing many of the people involved in Friday’s incident. Some of the conflict between interpretations of what happened in McKinney appears to be more generational than racial.
15-year-old Brandon Brooks is the teenager who shot the now infamous McKinney Pool Party video. In an interview on CW33, Brooks gives his account of the day’s events.
Brooks says he heard about the pool party on Twitter, where Breitbart Texas has reported the event had been promoted for about a month.
Brooks, who is white, said that when he and a friend showed up at the party, a security guard told them the party was in violation of rules that only allow two guests per resident. This admonition was given to both black and white attendees.
Brooks and the other teens appear to have ignored this warning. As Brooks was preparing to leave, a fight broke out between Tatiana, the party promoter, and an unnamed older white woman. This fight was reported by Breitbart Texas on Sunday night.
Brooks freely admits that the problem with police officer David Eric Casebolt started when partygoers ignored police orders to stay put. Brooks says:
He walks over to this group of kids and told them to all sit on the ground, and puts them all on the ground.Then the cop walks further down the street trying to get more people, like,to question and all the kids that he first sat down all got up and started running away.
So that’s when I started filming. When the cop’s running back, he trips and drops his flashlight and he starts going crazy, putting people in handcuffs, attacking people and flinging them to the ground.
Brooks makes it clear that he thought the incident was racist.
I was one of the only white people in the area. You can see in part of the video where he tells us to sit down and he kind of skips over me and he tells all of my African American friends to sit down.
Brooks ignores another possible explanation: that his friends had apparently run from the police, while Brooks had not.
16-year-old party attendee Jordan Gray told NBC News that the race card was played right away by one of the partygoers, saying that a friend told the security guard he felt black kids were being singled out.
But as NBC reported, Gray’s father Maurice – who moved to McKinney from St. Louis for the opportunities and diversity of Texas – doesn’t agree.
“It wasn’t a black or white thing,” Maurice Gray said. “It was trying to take the teenagers to a different level to calm them down. McKinney is a safe place. Very diverse.”
But Maurice Gray also said he was troubled by some of the comments he’s seen on a community internet forum. He said he hoped the incident didn’t hurt race relations.
Racist comments have flown on both sides, primarily from people with no connection to McKinney. Additionally, some white residents have reported receiving death threats.