Investigative journalist Radley Balko has been researching police abuse in South Carolina and in a preview of his upcoming series on the matter, he released this particularly awful account. Aiken police officerspulled over Lakeya Hicks and Elijah Pontoon in Lakeya’s recently purchased car that still had temporary tags on it.
From the Washington Post:
In the video, Medlin asks Hicks to get out, then tells her that he stopped her because of the “paper tag” on her car. This already is a problem. There’s no law against temporary tags in South Carolina, so long as they haven’t expired.
Medlin then asks Pontoon for identification. Since he was in the passenger seat, Pontoon wouldn’t have been required to provide ID even if the stop had been legitimate. Still, he provides his driver’s license to Medlin. A couple of minutes later, Medlin tells Hicks that her license and tags check out. (You can see the time stamp in the lower left corner of the video.) This should be the end of the stop — which, again, should never have happened in the first place.
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The anal probe happens out of direct view of the camera, but the audio leaves little doubt about what’s happening. Pontoon at one point says that one of the officers is grabbing his hemorrhoids. Medlin appears to reply, “I’ve had hemorrhoids, and they ain’t that hard.” At about 12:47:15 in the video, the audio actually suggests that two officers may have inserted fingers into Pontoon’s rectum, as one asks, “What are you talking about, right here?” The other replies, “Right straight up in there.”
Pontoon then again tells the officers that they’re pushing on a hemorrhoid. One officer responds, “If that’s a hemorrhoid, that’s a hemorrhoid, all right? But that don’t feel like no hemorrhoid to me.”
After all of that, what did police do? They gave the couple a “courtesy warning” and didn’t even outline what infraction they were being warned about. Officer Medlin is still with the Aiken Department of Public Safety. See the outrageous video below and be sure to read further details and expert opinion from Radley Balko at The Washington Post.