TROY, Ala. (AP) — An Alabama woman said Friday that police officers severely beat her Black 17-year-old son while he was handcuffed and she wants answers from authorities about what happened.
Angela Williams shared a photo of her son’s bloodied face on Facebook and it went viral. Representatives for the family said Ulysses Wilkerson was startled by police on the night of Dec. 23 and he ran away. Officers caught up to him and beat him, they said.
Pike County District Attorney Tom Anderson told CNN police said they used force after Wilkerson reached into his waistband for what they feared might be a weapon. Troy police told WHDN-TV that Wilkerson has been charged with resisting arrest and obstruction, both misdemeanors.
Family members, some of them wearing All Lives Matter T-shirts, held a news conference Friday and spoke about how Wilkerson was another example of police mistreatment of African-Americans. The family said authorities have not told them what happened.
“I’m in the dark, and I should be the last one in the dark,” Williams said.
Police in the city of Troy have been tightlipped about what happened and said state authorities are investigating. It’s not clear what race the arresting officers were.
Wilkerson’s father, Ulysses Wilkerson Jr., told th e station his son’s eye socket was cracked and his brain was swollen. The family is holding a rally Saturday, in part to seek justice for their son and bring attention to his case.