On Tuesday, September 26, 2017, a sixteen-year-old Black Ann Arbor resident, Ciaeem Slaton, was violently arrested by Ann Arbor Police Department’s (AAPD) Officer Marrow, #006, in downtown Ann Arbor at the Blake Transit Center. Leading up to the incident, Ciaeem was at the bus station with his cousin and other students, waiting to take the bus home. The officer approached him and repeatedly said “ya’ll need to leave right now.” When asked why he was there, Ciaeem replied that he was waiting for the bus. The officer then asked for his cousin’s ID and then Ciaeem’s. Neither of them had IDs because their school, Pathways to Success, has not given them out, which they communicated. The officer demanded that they go to his office. He then grabbed Ciaeem’s backpack and yanked him into the transit center, which is where video of the physical contact begins. The officer then said “if you move one more time, I’m going to take you down.” The officer never warned Ciaeem that he would be arrested and never stated his rights. In the video, Ciaeem is taken down by the officer, pinned to the ground with the officer’s knees on Ciaeem’s back, and the officer drew his taser which appears to be pointed at Ciaeem. After the video ends, Ciaeem was given a “trespass” charge, which means he is not allowed to use the Ann Arbor or Ypsilanti busses or be at the bus stations for an entire year. The public bus is Ciaeem’s mode of transportation to school. Ciaeem was released from police custody while on site at the transit center and went home.
Ciaeem and his family are seeking justice in the form of an apology from AAPD and Officer Marrow for the way they treated Ciaeem, for lying to Ciaeem’s mother after the incident, and for violating his rights. They want compensation for Ciaeem’s physical injuries, suffering, and embarrassment. They are demanding that all charges and consequences against Ciaeem be dropped.
Collective Against White Supremacy (CAWS), a local anti-racist grassroots organization, is supporting Ciaeem’s campaign for justice. CAWS is advocating changes to the police department’s use of force policy on youth and changes to the enforcement policies for “trespassing,” which allow police to profile youth who use public transit. CAWS is also hosting a fundraising campaign to support Ciaeem’s family for legal, food, and housing funds. The hashtag being used for Ciaeem’s campaign on social media is #Justice4CiaeemSlaton.
Video of the arrest may be viewed here.
Ciaeem’s mother, Kashatria Moore, is available for comment and can be reached by phone, to connect with her please contact CAWS at firstname.lastname@example.org with media credentials.