Home News Incident with handcuffed 10-year-old girl involved ‘Sovereign Citizens’

Incident with handcuffed 10-year-old girl involved ‘Sovereign Citizens’


A Sunday traffic stop in New York led to a ten-year-old girl being handcuffed, and the adults in the vehicle were allegedly Sovereign Citizens.

The controversial cuffing of the pre-teen was underscored by police claims that the occupants of the car claimed to be of “sovereign citizen status,” and one person claimed diplomatic immunity.

The vehicle reportedly lacked current registration and a front licence plate, which is required in New York.

According to Rochester First, local lawyer Mike Burger took exception to the cuffing, but noted that the “diplomatic immunity” claims were absurd.

“There are exceptions where someone can’t be detained, if they have diplomatic immunity, and that’s via treaty with other countries, and there are good policy reasons underlying that,” said Burger. “Although the police may have the right to handcuff a ten year old girl under extreme circumstances it is absolutely not normal, it is highly unusual and the police should (and would) generally avoid it if at all possible.”

Police claim that the girl had repeatedly attempted to “pull away” into traffic, and was cuffed for safety.

“Without viewing body cam and dash cam video it may be too soon to determine whether that extreme procedure was properly employed here,” Burger said.

The New York Civil Liberties Union has become involved in the matter, and has formally asked the Rochester Police Accountability Board to investigate the incident.

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