Waffle House defends police presence at arrest

World       by Muhammad Irfan | Published

"We declare to the Waffle House Corporation and the Saraland Police Department that is unacceptable the way they assaulted her, the way they threatened this unarmed black woman the way they body slammed this unarmed black woman and the way they brutalized this unarmed black woman", said Attorney Benjamin Crump.

A statement released Monday by Waffle House spokesman Greg Rollings says it appears police involvement was appropriate, based on security video and witness accounts.

Clemons allegedly asked for plastic utensils, which are normally free, with her order and was told that she had to pay for them.

Clemons asked why police were handling her the way they did. One of the officers threatened to break Clemons' arm, put a hand on her throat, and exposed her breasts in the process of trying to flip her over to place her in handcuffs. In the photocopied statements, a witness claimed that a Waffle House employee told Clemons that she should "know your place", which Crump believed had racial overtones. In a news conference on Monday, police said several witnesses told them Clemons and her friend arrived intoxicated.

Crump said, in front of a crowd of around 50 African-Americans, that he had seen white murders treated with more respect than Clemons and that the arresting officers should have established both sides of the story before immediately going after her. The Saraland Police Department is conducting its own investigation. When Clemons and Adams objected and said they had not been charged for them in the past, the waitress cancelled their order, Clemons-Howard said.

Clemons, who was charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest, and Adams, who was not arrested, could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

Police also said that the case is in no way linked to plastic utensils. "Our department strives for transparency and we encourage our community to be aware of current events".


We are still obtaining and reviewing information. Surveillance footage shows the police were called not long after the two arrived.

The statement says the company has information that differs "significantly" from claims by the woman who was arrested Sunday.

There were protests outside the restaurant the Sunday following the incident, which came as police faced increasing scrutiny over brutality and use of excessive force against black people.

In a social media post, Adams said she and Clemons felt "blessed" to still be here, adding the "situation could've turned out way worst [sic] then what it was".

AL.com verified that there are four cameras in the Waffle House, located at 1204 Industrial Parkway.

The Mobile branch of the NAACP will host a press conference in Saraland Thursday at 4 p.m.

The NAACP calls the arrest troubling, and pickets with signs stood outside the restaurant near Mobile in Saraland.

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