A Davis County mother says a Woods Cross police officer pointed a gun at her 10-year-old son during a police pursuit of two armed suspects on Thursday — an incident she believes was racially biased.
Police Lt. Adam Osoro confirmed that an officer had pointed his gun at DJ Hrubes during a “dynamic and unfolding” search that started in Centerville and ended in West Bountiful. A nearby officer who responded to the incident came across the child, who was playing in a front yard, and asked him to stop, Osoro said.
Instead, the boy ran to the side of the house. The officer withdrew his weapon and told Hrubes to get on the ground, which he did. As he got closer, that’s when he realized the boy was not involved in the incident, Osoro recounted.
The contact between the officer and the child lasted between 10 and 15 seconds, he estimated.
“Our officer acted appropriately under the circumstances,” Osoro said.
But Jerri Hrubes, the boy’s mother, says in a Facebook post that she believes her son was racially profiled.
“I believe it’s because my child is BLACK!!!!” she wrote shortly afterward. “... Dj was held at gunpoint around 1:00 pm today. Dj asked what did I do? The cop says I don’t want any any [sic] questions. Get on the ground now... I AM FURIOUS!!!”
Hrubes did not respond to an immediate request for comment Thursday evening.
The chase began around 12:30 p.m., after police received a call about a reckless driver who was possibly shooting a gun at other cars. Officers located the vehicle, and the driver sped off after spotting police. That resulted in a high-speed chase south on Interstate 15, during which point a firearm was thrown out of the window, according to Centerville Sgt. Mike Dingman.
The suspects eventually fled on foot. After a short pursuit, officers were able to locate and arrest one of the suspects, who has not yet been named. Officers are still searching for the other.
As the Woods Cross Police Department fields questions about its officers’ conduct, Osoro said he wanted to remind residents that the number of police “acting under good faith greatly outnumber officers that don’t represent us well.”