Bodycam Footage From 2018 Shows Virginia Police Officer Tackling Black Man for Riding Bike Without Headlights

A Virginia family is looking for justice for their family member in a newly released police body camera video showed Norfolk, Virginia police tackling a Black bicyclist, Derrick Rountree, for riding around without a headlight almost three years ago on Christmas Eve according to The Virginian-Pilot. The almost 30-minute police body camera video obtained by the newspaper, was submitted as evidence in the case a few weeks ago by lawyer Christina Connell for the Rountree’s family.

During the 1:38 minute video posted to YouTube, officer Aaron Nkrumah Christie’s body video shows him running full speed toward Rountree, tackling him to the ground. The man is heard saying the , “Why you do that?” The audio was muffled, however, Rountree asks, “Why you do that to me, bro? I ain’t do nothing.”

Christie responded, “You have no light [on your bicycle]. We tried to stop you. You tried to run.” Rountree responded, “Is you serious, man? I didn’t know you had to have a light for a bike.”

Rountree suffered a broken right tibia and fibula due to the incident. The document said he was taken to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital for treatment, where he was in the hospital for several days.

Rountree allegedly rode past a police cruiser on December 24, 2018, around 9 p.m. The officer sounded the vehicle’s siren, flashed its lights, and said something over a megaphone.

The 43-year-old, didn’t think the officer was signaling him, therefore, he kept riding. Soon afterward, he turned around to head back to a friend’s hone at the Tidewater Gardens public housing complex where he was staying. That’s when Christie sprang into action.

Rountree would be charged with a headlight infraction and obstruction of justice, however, the obstruction charge was later dismissed. Roundtree reportedly was fined $15 for not having a headlight.

A lawsuit was filed in December 2020 in the U.S. District Court in Norfolk. Christina alleged her client’s civil rights were violated when officers used excessive force when they stopped him from riding his bike a night because he didn’t have a headlight, which is against the law in Virginia.

Christie said the location where Rountree was located — which is noted for its high crime — prompted him to stop the man. When he refused to comply with officers, Christie believed Rountree might be involved in illegal activities.

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Link to original The Black Detour

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