Carolyn Hendricks, 44, went on the radio show Karriem and Company last Wednesday and told Kamal Karriem, one of the shows three hosts, that she was beaten by officers with the Columbus Police Department and Corrections Officers with the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Department. (Karriem & Co. airs on WTWG 1050 AM. It is co-hosted by brothers Kabir Karriem, Kamal Karriem and Ahmed Karriem. Kabir Karriem is also a councilman for Ward 5. Kamal Karriem was the only host when Hendricks appeared on the show. – SF)
Hendricks was arrested on June 21 when officers with the CPD responded to 723 20th St. N. in reference to a disturbance. Officers Thomas Culpepper, Brian Jenkins and David Hunt arrived on scene and discovered Hendricks and her boyfriend in the middle of a verbal altercation. Officers separated the feuding couple and Hendricks was led away from the argument by Officer Jenkins. Hendricks continued yelling, and when she was asked to calm down, she repeatedly tried to run past police back in the direction of her boyfriend.
According to reports, Hendricks was told that if she did not calm down she would be arrested with one of the officers saying “I don’t want to have to take you to jail, ma’am.” She then started yelling at the officers and attempted to assault them, swinging wildly in their direction. She then kicked the officers in the legs and punched Officer Jenkins in the stomach before attempting to punch him in the groin. Jenkins then “drive stunned” Hendricks, meaning the Tazer did not release its prongs, and placed her in the ground while attempting to restrain her. Once she was on the ground, Hendricks began yelling “You can’t treat me like an animal!” CPD Corporal and shift supervisor Barry Goode was then called to the scene to assist the other officers.
Officers called an ambulance to check Hendricks for injuries but she refused treatment, saying, “They just want to kill me because I’m black.” (This is the third incident involving Hendricks that a Packet reporter has been on scene and heard Hendricks make racial comments. More than once she has referred to Caucasian officers as “white devil.” – SF)
After she refused treatment, Hendricks also refused to walk to the waiting patrol car, forcing officers Culpepper and Jenkins to carry her. Once she was placed in the back of a patrol car, she unsuccessfully tried to kick out the driver’s side rear window three times. To keep her from harming herself or the officers, Hendricks’ legs were restrained. (In a prior arrest, Hendricks reportedly kicked the window of the patrol car so hard that she knocked the window off the track. – SF)
After being restrained, Hendricks began head butting the cage behind the driver’s seat. [Packet reporter John Douglas was on scene for the incident and reported the arrest in Packet 990. – SF]
Hendricks was arrested and charged with two counts of Simple Assault on a Police Officer, one count of Disorderly Conduct and one count of Resisting Arrest. She was transported to the Lowndes County Adult Detention Center.
During Wednesday’s broadcast, Kamal Karriem told listeners “somebody’s grandmother was beat up by the police.”
Karriem admits that he did not witness Hendricks’ arrest but states that his brother, Ward 5 Councilman Kabir Karriem, did, as well as “at least 25″ people. Kamal Karriem states, “The way I came to know about it was my brother Kabir Karriem was on site. (He saw) the way police were handling her. (This is) according to my brother, I take him at his word.”
Kamal Karriem then got in contact with Hendricks and invited her on the radio show. During his introduction of Hendricks, Kamal Karriem stated she was “violently attacked by the Columbus Police Department, so go run tell somebody.”
Once Hendricks appeared on the show, she went into a very detailed account of her arrest, differing from both the officers and The Packet’s account.
According to Hendricks, she called 911 when she discovered that her landlord had let her boyfriend into her apartment without her permission. As she was beginning to explain what happened once officers arrived on scene, Kamal Karriem interrupted her and asked, “Not that it should matter but were they white officers?” To which Hendricks replied, “They were white officers.” (Hendricks is African-American.)
“They came there, I know this because my experience with the law goes back to 2011 when they attacked me then, from then to now, and they came there to jump on me,” she said.
Karriem asked, “How was it initiated?”
Hendricks responded, “They just grabbing me by my wrists, they started slamming me down on the ground,” to which Karriem asked, “What made them put their hands on you?”
“I was talking back, I was talking back, I was talking back, I was telling them, you’re supposed to be an officer of the law, don’t be touching me, grabbing my wrists and twisting my arm. It wasn’t right.”
Hendricks and Karriem then discussed why the police “put their hands” on her if she was the one who called 911 for help. Hendricks said she tried to explain the situation to police but “they wasn’t hearing me.”
Karriem then said, “And then they went to restrain you because you talk with your hands?”
Hendricks responded, “Yes, sir.”
Karriem: “So that was offensive to the officers, you speaking with your hands. That’s what we do, we talk with our hands.”
Hendricks: “Yes, yes, yes.”
Karriem: “So then what happened?”
Hendricks: “They started grabbing me and choking me by my neck.”
Karriem: “By this time a crowd has started developing.”
Hendricks: “I kept explaining to the officers that was grabbing me by my neck that I have thyroids and my neck swells.”
Karriem: “All four of them?”
Hendricks: “All four of them had their nails in my neck and they slammed me with their hands on my back and they slammed me on the ground.”
Karriem: “Now you weigh about a hundred, a hundred and thirty five pounds, I mean you’re not very big so…”
Hendricks: “Yes, I do.”
Karriem: “Why, why, why, do you think it would take four Columbus police officers to subdue a 135 pound woman?”
Hendricks: “Yes. Yes, it took that many to subdue me.”
Karriem: “Ok, so tell what else happened.”
Hendricks then continued to explain that the officers slammed her to the ground and on her back “as hard as they could.”
Kamal Karriem interrupted Hendricks and told her that was when his brother Kabir Karriem called him. Kamal Karriem stated, “He says ‘Kamal.’ Now this is Kabir, councilman, he’s witness to it.”
“He says, ‘Kamal, I can’t believe it. These Columbus Police Officers just slammed a woman on the ground. I’m standing up here looking at it.’ He was in total shock.”
Hendricks then told the radio host that she was “afraid” and started trying to “get them off of me” saying, “the more I was trying, the more rougher they was handling me rough.”
She then claimed one of the officers spit on her. “One of the officers, he harked from the bottom of his feet up all the way up to his mouth and he spit in my face. And I was telling him ‘That’s not right.’ I was letting him know that, you know, ‘Your eyes are red. Why are your eyes so red?’ I was talking back to them,” she said.
Karriem then asked, “What other physical force did they use?”
“Wow,” Hendricks said. “They uh, again, they put their hands around my neck again, and one of the officers put their hands around my neck once again and he put me up against a fence, he slammed me up against the fence while the other one beat me, he was punching me, he was kicking me. It was just out of control. I was steadily trying to protect myself. And so at that particular time when they kept putting their hands around my neck I blacked out. And when I blacked out they was steadily kicking me and beating me and they just didn’t care about my condition, whatever I had, they didn’t care. They was continually beating me and they Tazed me, they Tazed me.”
Kamal Karriem interrupted. “They Tazed you with a Tazer on top of that? All of four of them, besides using physical force an they still Taze you?” he asked.
To which Hendricks replied, “They still Tazed me.”
Hendricks then continued with her story, saying that while she was on the ground a neighbor came to help her. She claims that even as the woman was helping her up, the police were “beating” and “kicking” her, “beating me like there was no beating to do. They was stomping me, kicking me, they hit me on my right side of my eye with the Tazer and I got a bad bruise.” (Packet reporter/photographer John Douglas was on scene for the incident and arrived moments after Hendricks was tazed. Of the 88 photos taken, 17 photos show the officers making physical contact with Hendricks. 15 photos document Officers Culpepper and Jenkins carrying her to the car and two photos show Culpepper, Jenkins and Goode putting her inside the vehicle. While The Packet was not on scene for the entire incident, our pictures do not support Hendricks allegations against the officers. However, multiple witnesses on scene were recording the exchange between Hendricks and the officers on their phones. As of press time Wednesday evening, those witnesses had not come forward. SF)
Hendricks and Karriem then further discussed Hendricks being taken to jail and her charges of simple assault on a police officer and disorderly conduct. They also discussed her visiting a doctor after being released. While they did not discuss Hendricks refusing an ambulance on scene, she claims a doctor told her she had “muscular skeletal pains in her body” from the officers “slamming me down as hard as they did.”
Hendricks then told Kamal Karriem that she had spoken with Councilman Kabir Karriem. According to Hendricks, the councilman told her that he “didn’t like what he seeing, and that’s not in the book.”
As the show came to an end, Hendricks told Kamal Karriem of her alleged abuse in the back of the patrol car on the way to the jail, saying, “They was calling me crazy and bipolar.”
Hendricks then stated that when she arrived at the jail “there were four more officers waiting on me as well, and they beat me worser than the ones on the outside did inside the jail.”
A listener then called into the show asking Hendricks “what she planned on doing about that.”
Hendricks responded “I know that is police brutality. I know that, and I’m not for sure, but I would like to sue the Columbus Police Department and I would also like to sue everyone that was involved on the outside who attacked me and also everyone on the inside who attacked me. I want to make sure that they be spoken with or dealt with as well.”
When approached by The Packet, Kamal Karriem stated that Hendricks “has been encouraged to make an official complaint with the police department.” According to CPD Public Information Officer Glenda Buckhalter, Hendricks had been to the police department and picked up a form but has yet to file a formal complaint.
Karriem said that he is aware Hendricks “may have had some trouble in the past” and “may possibly be mentally challenged.” While jail records show Hendricks’ multiple arrests, there is no evidence to indicate a mental evaluation has ever been administered.
Hendricks has been arrested six times since 2004. Including her June arrest, Hendricks has been charged with two counts of Resisting Arrest, two counts of Disorderly Conduct, two counts of Simple Assault on a Police Officer, two counts of Public Drunkenness, two counts of Domestic Violence, one count of Failure to Obey a Police Officer, one count of Possession of Marijuana and one count of Felony Malicious Mischief.0