Two Roswell, Ga., police offers are on leave after video surfaced of them appearing to decide a woman’s fate with the flip of a virtual coin, WXIA reported.
The station reported that officer Courtney Brown pulled over Sarah Webb in Roswell for speeding past her cruiser in April. In dashcam video, which was obtained and edited by the station, the stop begins like most would expect any speeding stop to begin.
Officer Brown walks to Webb’s car and asks her if she knew how fast she was going.
“I’m so sorry, I am late for work,” she replies, while looking through her purse for her license.
“So you can go over 80 miles per hour, on 92? No ma’am.” She takes the woman’s license and keys as Webb looks up her insurance info on her phone.
“The ground is wet, it’s been raining, you’re going over 80 miles an hour on this type of a road ...”
“I’m so sorry,” Webb says.
“That’s reckless driving ma’am.”
As Webb keeps looking up her insurance, Officer Brown tells her to wait a moment and walks away.
“I’m going to take her probably for reckless,” Brown tells another officer, identified as Kristee Wilson by WXIA, after a cut in the footage. “She flew past me ... she said she was late for work, I had to get up to 90 to catch her.” She then says she does not have any speed detection equipment.
After a minute working on the computer, Brown asks “So what do you think? Just tickets?”
About 30 seconds later, Wilson says “A heads, R tails”
“Okay,” Brown says. Then a coin flipping sound.
“This is tails, right?,” Wilson says.
“Yeah, so release?”
“23,” Wilson says, indicating the code for arrest, according to the station.
“Michael Jordan!” Brown says, laughing. “Aight” (all right).
A few minutes later, Brown gets out of the car, places handcuffs on Webb and puts her in the patrol car.
“You were driving entirely too fast for conditions, you put a lot of people’s lives in jeopardy, okay?”
Video later shows Webb sobbing and pleading with the officer to pay a ticket instead, saying she had a “really big” day at work.
Webb’s mother Teresa posted about the incident on Facebook, saying she felt the police response was unnecessary.
“I feel Roswell Police should be held accountable. It makes me so upset seeing her crying. It makes me so upset to know what they have done to her. Sarah could have lost her job and she could have lost her license,” she wrote. “This caused a big financial hardship to our family.”
Many people agreed on social media, and called for consequences against the officers.
Others didn’t think it was that big of a deal.
“Wow, these people put my freedom in the hands of a coin flip,” Webb told WXIA. “And that’s disgusting.” A prosecutor decided not to move forward with charges after seeing the video, the station reported.