All he did was offer a handshake before attempting to walk away, already having obtained the cop’s name, Keith Parker, over not having been allowed on a plane earlier after he was falsely accused of drinking (more on that later).
When Youmans turned to walk away, the cop slapped him from behind, knocking him to the floor, drilling his knees into the back of Youman’s head while using his hands to further press his face into the floor, yelling “stop resisting!”
Several other cops came running up and piled on him, grabbing his limbs as Parker twisted his arms behind his back and handcuffed him.
Yousman was driven to a jail 40 miles away and released 12 hours later with no charges, no citation and no justification for having been arrested.
Nothing more than a contempt-of-cop arrest.
“He tackled me so hard that he broke my iPad and Macbook,” Youmans said in a telephone interview with Photography is Not a Crime Tuesday night.
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Another man who witnessed the incident, Devaraj Ramsamy, handed his business card to one of Youmans’ co-workers who was there.
Ramsamy joined the telephone conversation tonight in a three-way call, confirming that Youmans did not touch the officer before he was attacked.
“I was going one way, Derek was going the other way in the terminal and I saw him extend his hand and the cop was asking, “why are you recording me?” Ramsamy said.
“He then slaps him hard and takes him down to the ground and puts his knee to his head. He is yelling ‘stop resisting.’
“They tried to make it look as if he was resisting but he wasn’t.”
This is what can be heard in the video, which is posted below:
“What’s your name again?” Youmans asks as he walks up to the officer.
“You want to make a complaint or something? Is that why you’re recording?”
“No, I just want to get your name. What’s your name.”Parker?
“Keith Parker, nice to meet you. You won’t even shake my hand,” he says.
“You’re a standup individual,” Youmans says.
A slap can be heard, which is why I assumed he had patted the cop’s arm. The shadow on the floor also seems to capture his arm touching the cop.
And the cop’s violent reaction led me to believe that contact had been made, even though it would have been a huge overreaction if that had been the case.
But Youmans said the slap is his hand hitting his leg after bringing it back down from the attempted handshake.
Now it’s not an even an overreaction but a psychopathic explosion.
Youmans, who lives in San Diego, said the incident took place around 9 a.m. on December 3 at San Francisco International Airport as he was trying to board a flight home on Southwest.
A woman in line told a flight attendant that he and the man standing in front of him had been drinking. That led to Southwest officials to tell the men they would not be allowed to board the flight, informing them they were welcome to catch a flight the following morning at 5 a.m.
Youmans, who said he had not been drinking, said he did not know the other guy, who admitted to drinking, which apparently is some type of violation in San Francisco.
When Youmans told them he had not been drinking, six San Francisco cops marched up and ordered both men to leave the airport. Youmans walked away and was about to walk outside when he decided to return and make a complaint at the Southwest ticket booth.
After he did that, he spotted Jackson leaning against a wall, so he decided to ask for his name as part of his complaint.
“I turned on the camera because I had a feeling he wasn’t going to like me asking for his name,” Youmans said.
Youmans was released before noon the following day and returned to the airport and finally made it home.
The incident took place in the encircled area below. We are investigating whether there were any surveillance videos of the incident, which we will be asking for through public records requests.
Two things to learn here:
- If you’re going to be recording your interactions, you want the camera pointed at the cop’s face, even if they tell you to “get that camera out of my face,” like they tend to do. Just don’t literally put it in their face by keeping it closer to your face.
- Be sure to write a full description of what took place, including the date, time, location, circumstances, conclusion, etc. The who, what, when, where and why of the video.
Had that been done here, I would not have been forced to attempt to figure out the circumstances with the information that was available. We would also be able to see how the cops looks like, which is important when they regularly refuse to provide their names.
I stress this because Youman’s girlfriend, Carly Grace, tagged me in a Facebook post tonight, calling me an “ignorant person” and “making up things” around the same time I was talking to Youman and Ramsamy about what had happened.
She was upset because I had written the following:
Derek Youmans then offered his hand, but officer Keith Parker refused to shake it.
Youmans then appeared to slap the cop on the shoulder, a chummy half-hearted slap you do with friends or co-workers that never causes a violent reaction.
Youmans is obviously not seasoned in the act of recording cops, but he did well by approaching the cop with his camera on and asking for his name. Read PINAC’s Top Ten Rules for Recording Cops for more tips (forgive the lack of photos which were lost in the Great PINAC Crash of 2014).
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Keith Parker works for the airport patrol division. One of his two lieutenants can be reached directly at this number; (650) 821- 7109 .