Blavity Exclusive: Randell Minott Explains Viral Video Of Him Berating An Officer Who Pulled A Gun On Him During A Traffic Stop
The husband and father said he thought about his children being fatherless had the traffic stop gone wrong.
September 14, 2017 at 3:55 pm
When husband and father Randell Minott traveled to Kansas City, Missouri on business in early September, he had no idea he would be looking down the barrel of a police officer's gun during a routine traffic stop.
On Sept. 6, Minott posted a video on Facebook of himself berating a police officer for allegedly drawing his gun on him when he was stopped for not using a turn signal. "Do you feel empowered now?" Minott asked the officer. The officer seen in the video made the stop with his partner (not seen), who Minott said was checking his information at the time the incident was recorded.
The video quickly went viral with some social media users showing support, and others expressing their skepticism about what happened during the stop.
Minott agreed to share with Blavity an exclusive account of the events that occurred that night.
Minott said that earlier in the evening, he saw the same police officers at a gas station not too far from where he was pulled over. He was filling up his car when they pulled over a young girl there. He said he doesn't think the officers followed him, because he made another stop before he was pulled over, and no one was behind him.
Once pulled over, Minott said he waited in his car for about three minutes before he heard the officer approach his car.
"I had my license and everything ready. He only made it to my back glass, and when I turned around, through my back window, he had his pistol with the flashlight under it pointed at me," Minot said. "The light was in my face and when my eyes adjusted, I saw the gun. He was already out of control."
Minott said it was only when the officer's partner walked up on the other side of the car did he reholster his weapon. "Once he put his gun away, I grabbed my phone off the dashboard and started recording, and I told him I was going to record it."
Minott said he asked the officer why he was stopped, and he originally told him that his windows were too dark. Minott said his windows were down. They then said he didn't use his signal when he turned earlier. Minott said he couldn't recall if he used the signal or not, but he still didn't think it was enough for the officer to pull a gun on him.
"It wasn't enough for him to do all that. When I started recording, the more and more I talked, I just kept getting even more pissed off," he said. "I'm married with two kids and one on the way. My oldest son just turned 18. He's going to college and we just bought his first car. The whole time that's what I was thinking about, because if it were my son, he would've jumped or something when he saw that gun. What would the officer do then?"
Minott's said he told his family about the incident and they were shook up about it, but not surprised with how he handled it. They're just grateful it didn't end tragically.
In the video, the cop seems calm and can be heard saying "OK" a couple of times. Minott said that's the only thing he recalls the cop saying the entire time. The officer can be seen standing outside of the driver's side of Minott's car covering up his badge during the recording.
"I know some people [on social media] were saying I shut him down, but it wasn't like I was trying to shut him down. I was trying to make a point, and it didn't seem like he cared about what I was saying."
Originally from East Orange, New Jersey, Minott explained that he doesn't hate the police, because he knows good cops—including his uncle—who he knows he can trust.
"I don't hate police officers, but I don't trust them as a whole. On an individual level, I know there are some I can trust, but until a police officer snitches on another one and doesn't get blackballed for it, I don't trust them as a whole. It's guys like him who make the relationship hard between some cops [and the black community]. He knows the dangers of his job and I get that, but that doesn't mean he can put my life in danger."
Minot said the officers eventually gave him a ticket for a moving violation and switching lanes without using a signal. Neither of the officers have been identified and the Kansas City Police Deartment had not returned calls made by Blavity at the time of this report.