A New York City woman whose baby was violently snatched from her arms by police officers during a visit to a city office last year has been awarded $625,000.
Jazmine Headley, 24, of Brooklyn was recently awarded the money from taxpayer coffers after a video of a December 2018 confrontation with Human Resources Administration (HRA) peace officers and NYPD officers went viral, resulting in her lawsuit against the city.
“Ms. Headley came to the city seeking help, and we failed to treat her with the dignity and respect she deserved,” the city said in a statement. “While this injustice should have never happened, it forced a reckoning with how we treat our most vulnerable and prompted us to make reforms at HRA centers across the city.”
The incident began when a security officer at the HRA office approached Headley and told her she couldn’t sit on the floor while waiting to see a case worker. The situation quickly escalated as other officers responded, with Headley ending up on the floor while struggling to pull her 1-year-old son from the officers’ grasp.
Headley spent four days at Rikers Island on charges of obstruction, resisting arrest, endangered the welfare of a child and trespassing. The charges were ultimately dropped.
Her lawyer stated Headley sat on the floor near her baby’s stroller because she was too tired after waiting three hours inside the office.