Video showing a Montreal police officer kneeling on the neck of a Black teenager has sparked an outcry in Canada.
The 14-year-old was not harmed in the incident, which was filmed by a passerby at a bus stop, but it has drawn comparisons to the fatal arrest of George Floyd in Minnesota last year,
The boy’s mother now says her son is afraid to leave their home in the Quebec city.
“Is it because my son is Black?” she said to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.
“It’s not because we’re Black that we have to experience those kind of things. We’re humans. Poor child.”
The 90-second video shows one police officer pinning the teen down by his neck, while another searches his bag.
The officer removes an object for the bag and holds it up for the camera and says the teenager is being arrested for having a stun gun.
The teenager does not appear to resist the officers, and is seemingly handcuffed.
Officials at the Service de police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM) say that the officers were responding to a school fight involving more than a dozen teenagers.
Police later confirmed that two minors were arrested for carrying weapons an an investigation was underway into the incident.
“If the use of force is not justified, the administration will take the required actions,” said SPVM spokesperson Inspector David Shane.
He warned that the camera angle in videos such as this could be misleading, and that the teenagers had not been cooperating with officers before they were arrested.
The officer involved is continuing to work while the investigation takes place.
“What we need to point out as well, during an intervention, the person who has the initiative, is always the suspect. Police have to react accordingly and with proportion,” Insp Shane told CBC News.
Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante has asked the SPVM to clarify what took place.
“The images circulating are worrying. This investigation should shed light on the entire intervention,” she said in a statement to Radio-Canada.
“The images of the intervention once again reiterate the importance of implementing body cameras, which we are working on with our partners.”
Kneeling on a suspect’s neck is reportedly not banned by the SPVM.