It’s always saddening anytime we hear a report of excessive force by the police, but this latest story involving a NY State Trooper that pepper sprayed and rammed the SUV of one Black family with such lack of empathy that it led to a child’s death is beyond heartbreaking.
According to The Root, the four household family consisting of 39-year-old Tristin Goods, his wife April and their two daughters, 12-year-old Tristina and now-deceased 11-year-old Monica, were pretty much harassed by the aforementioned state trooper on a traffic stop three days before Christmas.
Here’s how New York Daily News put things into perspective:
It began while Goods, 39, who lives in both Queens and Long Island, drove his wife, April, and his daughters, Monica, 11, and Tristina, 12 to visit relatives. The trooper stopped Goods for speeding at 11:40 p.m., in the town of Ulster, about 95 miles north of the city.
Goods says the trooper yelled at him during the stop.
“He was screaming at me, ‘You were going 100 miles per hour and you shook my car!’ Goods recalled.
“I said ‘The tractor trailer in front of me shook your car.’ I had my hands on the steering wheel. I didn’t get out of the car. I was no threat him,” Goods said. “I asked for a supervisor.”
The two argued — with the trooper demanding to know if there were “guns or drugs” in the car, Goods recounted.
“My wife said she was tired, and he said, ‘I don’t give a s–t if you’re tired,’” Good recalled.
The trooper returned to his cruiser — and when he returned, he flooded Goods’ SUV with pepper spray. Goods said the trooper was well aware there were young girls in the car when he sprayed.
“He didn’t warn us he was going to use pepper spray,” Goods said. “He didn’t say ‘Get out of the car’ or ‘You’re under arrest.’”
Goods said his daughters were crying, and he feared for his family’s safety. Instinctively, he said, he drove off.
“I didn’t know what he was going to do next,” Goods said. “I was like, ‘Holy s–t. This guy is going to kill me now.’”
What happened next was a senseless loss, as the trooper, identified as Christopher Baldner, rammer his cruiser into the back of Good’s SUV not once but twice. That second hit sent the family’s 2017 Dodge Journey into a guardrail, where it flipped, rolled and ultimately ejected Monica out the car to her immediate death.
Making matters worse, Goods couldn’t even go search for and potentially help Monica immediately afterwards because he was too busy having a *gun* pointed at him by Baldner, who was still gung-ho on finding imaginary guns and drugs in the car.
For his heinous actions, Baldner was simply put on desk duty where he currently remains as an investigation commences. We pray that justice is fully served, and let’s all continue to pray for this family.
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State Trooper Pepper Sprayed & Rammed Family’s SUV, Leading To Death Of 11-Year-Old Black Girl was originally published on blackamericaweb.com