A police officer in Buffalo, New York has been suspended after he was caught on video using misogynistic slurs against a woman. The video was recorded on Sunday and published by TMZ, showing an encounter between Lieutenant Mike DeLong and a woman with a camera. On Monday evening, DeLong was suspended.
DeLong was a part of a large team of officers responding to an incident at a 7-Eleven in Buffalo. As many as 10 cops responded to a call about a Black man who allegedly attacked his mother, while in possession of drug paraphernalia. The woman was recording the encounter without comment when DeLong approached her, saying: "We have cameras too." When she asked him to step away from her, he said: "No. Move me."
This challenging encounter escalated, as DeLong — who was not wearing a face mask — refused to give the camerawoman any personal space. She asked him if it was really necessary to have so many officers on the scene for this kind of call, which is when DeLong began dispensing foul language.
"You're a disrespectful little f—ing c—, that's what you are," the lieutenant said. The woman responded, "Thank you, you're going to be viral," which DeLong welcomed. "I don't care if I go viral. I really don't," he said.
The woman reportedly posted her video on Facebook on Sunday, where it picked up many views before TMZ published it. She claimed that she was on her way out of the 7-Eleven parking lot when the huge procession of police arrived, and she stopped because she was afraid for the Black man's safety.
"I was immediately concerned. I've lived on the westside of Buffalo for my whole life (pre-gentrification), I've seen people in my community battle substance abuse and mental illness. He seemed off, but I was not threatened by him in the slightest," she said.0comments
The situation did resolve without further incident, as the man was eventually placed on a gurney and wheeled into an ambulance. However, the woman recording the episode argued that police should not be so threatened by civilians with cameras, writing: "Armed police officers should be able to effectively do their job without being threatened by civilians recording them."
Buffalo PD initiated an internal investigation into the incident after TMZ published the video. The department informed reporters that DeLong had been suspended on Monday evening.