A 10-year-old girl was arrested by the Honolulu Police back in January 2020 for drawing a picture of another student at their Honowai Elementary School in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Even though the image of the drawing hasn’t been released, it’s been reported that it made a parent demand the school to call the police and arrest the girl. Now, the American Civil Liberties Union is taking action against the Hawaii Department of Education and the Honolulu Police Department, and seeks $500,000 in damages for the girl and her mother.
According to a letter sent to the DOE by the ACLU, the 10-year-old girl suffers from ADHD and she was detained and questioned in the absence of a parent.
Additionally, she was handcuffed and escorted of school without being charged, and the police stopped the girl’s mother from seeing her after she arrived at the school.
The child was later released and returned to her mom.
This is what the mom wrote in a letter to the school’s superintendent and the Honolulu Police Department:
“Although I was at Honowai Elementary, I was not told that my daughter was removed from the premises, handcuffed in front of staff and her peers, placed into a squad car, and taken away. I was stripped of my rights as a parent and my daughter was stripped of her right to protection and representation as a minor. There was no understanding of diversity, African-American culture and the history of police involvement with African-American youth. My daughter and I are traumatized from these events and I’m disheartened to know that this day will live with my daughter forever.”
According to the Honolulu Police Department and retired federal agent Tommy Aiu, the police had only followed protocol as they had been called by the DOE to look into the situation of a 10-year-old girl drawing a picture.