Hispanic Police Officer Detains, Berates Teenagers ‘Because They Are White’ (VIDEO)

Lake Villa Detective Esteban Gomez detained and berated a group of teenagers on Monday. When asked why they were being detained, the detective clearly stated “because you’re white”.

One of the teens can be heard saying, “Oh wow” in response to the overtly racist statement.

NBC Chicago reported:


A suburban Chicago police officer has been disciplined after he was recorded on video telling a teenager he was being detained because he’s white.

Dezi Baczek, who recorded the video, said she was with friends at a Lake Villa pawn shop where they had gone to sell an item so her little brother could buy a book he had been wanting. When the group exited the shop, they said a detective came up to them.

“I was yelled at to sit down,” Baczek told NBC 5. “I said, ‘What’s the reason?’ And he said sit down or I could turn around and be arrested, so I sat down at that point.”

That’s when she said she started recording.

Police said the detective was conducting a theft investigation at the time and was questioning someone in the group. While the remaining members of the group sat on the curb, one teen can be heard in the video recording asking why he’s being detained.

“Because I’m a teen? Because I have baggy pants?” the person says in the footage.

That’s when the officer responds with “Because you’re white,” and walks away.

According to Police Chief Craig Somerville, Detective Gomez was subsequently disciplined. Imagine if this were a white police officer berating Muslims, blacks or Hispanics because of their skin color or dress? The outrage would be heard across the country and the officer would be forced out of his job.

“Det. Gomez admitted his words were poorly chosen and insensitive and he immediately regretted what he had said,” Somerville said in a statement. “The Lake Villa Police Department does not condone this type of behavior of its officers.”

Gomez was disciplined “for behavior unbecoming an officer” and will be speaking to the parents and teens involved, Somerville said. The details on his discipline weren’t immediately released.

VIDEO: (language warning)

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