ROHNERT PARK, California – Cellphone footage uploaded to YouTube on Monday shows a cop pulling his gun on a man standing in his own driveway, apparently for filming the cop.
The man, referring to himself as Don McComas in the video description, said that he was in his driveway hitching his boat trailer to his truck, when he noticed that a Rohnert police rig move slowly down his street. Instead of leaving the neighborhood, the patrol car made another, slow pass towards McComas.
McComas says that the cop then stopped his car, directly facing McComas and his house, and did nothing but stare at him. McComas became unsettled: “After a couple minutes I was concerned enough to pull out my phone and hit record. Glad I did,” he said.
According to McComas’ description, he has suffered from Rohnert police before, although he offers no details as of yet. McComas wrote:
“I am not anti police however the lies and distrust I’ve encountered from the Rohnert Park & Petaluma Police over the last 15 months is something I wouldn’t ever believe if I heard it from someone else. This is just a time I was smart enough to hit record as I was approached at my home.”
Shortly after filming begins, we see the unidentified officer get out of his car, and order McComas to take his hand out of a pocket. McComas replies immediately: “No sir; I’ve done nothing. I’ve done absolutely nothing. No.”
Then, the officer draws his pistol, and proceeds to keep advancing towards McComas, bombarding him with questions and making attempts to order McComas around.
McComas keeps retreating deeper into his driveway, and even points at the officer and says, “You don’t touch me!” after the cop fails to explain why he is confronting McComas, why he has his weapon drawn, or why he keeps advancing towards him. The officer tells McComas that he is “not going away,” or in other words, does not have to leave McComas’ property. He is recorded as saying,
“I don’t go away; I stay right here. You can go in your house if you want, or you can stay out here, but you don’t keep your hand in your pocket.”
McComas responds by, yet again, reminding that he has the right to stand on his own property with his hand(s) in his pockets, and that he has done nothing wrong or otherwise given the officer any cause to suspect he has done something wrong.
The officer tells McComas near the end of the video that he is confronting him so that he can ‘take a picture’ of McComas, and that he suspects that McComas had a weapon in his pocket.
When McComas continues to assert his right to be left alone, and to not have vacate his own property or comply with illegal orders from the cop, the officer asks McComas, “What’s wrong with you?” McComas responds by telling him “Your [police] station is corrupt.”
The next line from the officer is unbelievable. He says:
“Oh, ok. Are you some kind of a Constitutionalist? [A] crazy guy or something like that?”
After McComas asks the officer if he is being detained, arrested and/or accused of a crime, and the officer confirms that McComas is not, the cop is seen to leave.
Since uploading the footage and his story, many people have swarmed the Rohnert police department’s Facebook page, demanding answers and mocking the officer, as well as the Rohnert police more generally.
On that same page, the mayor and city manager of Rohnert posted a reply to the outrage from concerned citizens. In part, it reads:
“We’ve been made aware of this matter and we are taking it seriously. We understand the concerns that have been raised by our community and others and we want the public to know that your trust in law enforcement in our City is a top priority. As a result, we will conduct an internal review to verify that appropriate protocols were followed.”
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