The child is accused of stealing a bag of Doritos.
The video had been seen more than five million times since it was posted, with commenters outraged over the actions of the officers in the video.
The roughness of the officers made even the person taking the video very upset.
The clip begins with an officer tightly holding the arms of a young Black child, crying out in pain. The bystander taking the video, a man named Kenneth Jackson, keeps asking the police what they are doing.
The interaction between Jackson and the police was tense.
“What is y’all doin’?”
The police responded angrily:
“Guess. Take a guess what we’re doing.”
But Jackson continued to call the police out:
“He looks like a baby to me! So what’s going on then?”
Another officer steps up:
“He’s stealing stuff. If he breaks into your house to steal something-”
But Jackson wasn’t having that argument.
“Nah, man. What is that? A bag of chips, so you gotta treat him like a whole, cold blooded, f*cking killer?”
Those who watched the video agreed the police were rougher than they needed to be.
The young boy was escorted to the back of a police vehicle. According to a statement by Syracuse police, he was never placed in handcuffs and was taken to his home where officers met with the boy’s father.
However, the viral nature of the video caused a response that likely wouldn’t have otherwise come about. The video is being reviewed for the conduct of the officers involved.
Jackson was later interviewed by local NBC 15 news.
He said he feels the police did not handle the situation properly.
“There’s a way that the police need to interact with kids, and what they did that day was completely unacceptable.”
Anthony Weah, the father of the boy, claimed the officers knocked the child off his bike and slapped him on his back. He would like to see accountability for the officers.
There were some who sided with the officers, including policing expert Dr. Keith Taylor and professor of forensic studies David Thomas.
They both agreed the police did the right thing in this situation and it’s difficult for officers to interact with a child accused of theft without them crying.
But there were some online takes that were shut down by other commenters.
Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh said in a statement he was concerned about the incident, but reiterated the child was not placed in handcuffs and taken home to his father.
However, he called for police to support kids and families and look at alternative response options.