Video shows barefoot toddler with hands up walking toward armed police officers

Video shows barefoot toddler with hands up walking toward armed police officers
Police body cam footage shows the incident, in which the girl's parents were suspects in a reported shoplifting.

TALLAHASSEE, FL (WCTV/CNN/Gray News) - The Tallahassee, FL, mayor says officers showed “compassion” during a traffic stop captured on cell phone video in which a toddler climbed out of a pickup truck with her hands up and then walked toward officers carrying rifles.

The incident occurred as Tallahassee police were arresting shoplifting suspects.

“She’s trying to get out but she can’t because she’s little,” said the person filming the video. “She is out. Oh, she’s holding her hands up. Oh my God, look at that. Oh my God.”

The video goes on.

“They’re still holding the gun at the baby," says one viewer. The other disputes. "No, they’re holding the gun at the car.”

The viewers couldn’t believe it as the toddler made her way to police with her hands in the air.

"Naw, they're not doing that little girl like that,” said a couple who saw the video. “She put her hands on the back of her head. Where are her parents?"

In a Facebook post Friday, the police department released body camera footage of the incident in which officers can be heard telling the girl that she’s OK and that she doesn’t need to have her hands up. They are directing her to walk toward her mother.

Tallahassee Mayor John Dailey says the footage reveals officers showed “compassion... during an intense situation."

"I’m very proud of their actions and appreciative of the work these men and women do each day to keep our community safe,” he said, according to the Facebook post.

Update on traffic stop video with small child in car

#UPDATE TPD is providing an update to the press release regarding a small child being involved in a traffic stop. Body camera footage and a statement from Chief Michael DeLeo can be viewed. The original video by the citizen is first, then the video shows Chief DeLeo speaking about the incident. The body worn camera footage shows the officers' actions in the incident. The gun located in the vehicle was actually a pellet gun. “This video footage captures the compassion demonstrated by our TPD officers during an intense situation. I’m very proud of their actions and appreciative of the work these men and women do each day to keep our community safe,” Mayor John Dailey said. Original Press Release January 17,2019: On Thursday afternoon, January 17, 2019 around 4:30 p.m., Tallahassee Police officers were called to Bealls Outlet located 3240 Capital Circle Northeast in reference to a shoplifting. Information was received from the store regarding one of the suspects having what appeared to be a gun in their waistband. Based on this information, the Loss Prevention officers did not stop the suspects, but provided TPD officers with a description of the suspects and their vehicle. Officers arriving on scene were able to stop the suspects in the parking lot and detain the individuals inside the vehicle which was a blue pickup truck. Chad M. Bom and James W. McMullen were charged with the theft from Bealls Outlet. The Tallahassee Police Department was made aware of a video of the incident circulating on social media. TPD is currently reviewing the incident and the body worn camera video from the incident. Arrested: Chad M. Bom Age 34 Charge: Petit Theft 2nd Degree pursuant to Florida Statute 812.014(3)(a). Arrested: James W. McMullen Age 38 Charge: Petit Theft 2nd Degree pursuant to Florida Statute 812.014(3)(a).

Posted by City of Tallahassee Police Department on Friday, January 18, 2019

Police said they received a call that the suspected shoplifters had a gun.

The toddler’s parents were among the suspects, police told the Tallahassee Democrat. There was also an infant in the vehicle.

Police Spokesperson Damon Miller said officers had to approach the situation with caution.

"It's just for safety because we don't know who else is inside the vehicle,” Miller said. “If you look at the video, there are multiple people that actually did come outside of the vehicle. It's very important that our awareness is very heightened on a situation like that."

Tallahassee police said two people were arrested on petty theft charges.

Authorities say neither man had a gun, but a pellet gun was found in the backseat of the truck, according to the paper.

It is unclear if both the child’s parents were arrested.

Copyright 2019 WCTV via CNN. All rights reserved. Gray News contributed to this report.