TAMPA, FL– A 23-year-old woman who video recorded her encounter with a Tampa police officer back in June was arrested on Tuesday.
Joneshia Wilkerson has been charged with failure to return a leased vehicle and fraudulent use of a credit card. The incident dates back to June 2nd, when according to Tamp police detectives, Wilkerson went to the Hertz Rent-a-Car at St. Pete-Clearwater Airport and rented a black 2020 Nissan Altima.
Wilkerson provided her driver’s license and a credit card to rent the car. According to reports, the rented car was due back on June 6th, but it was never returned. When Hertz attempted to contact Wilkerson about the rented car, they discovered that the credit card she used was stolen.
On June 18th, Hertz filed a stolen car report with the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office. Pinellas detectives said that Wilkerson was seen in surveillance footage renting the car and was identified by employees at Hertz.
The employees said that Wilkerson used a friend’s driver’s license and provided the same phone number she later gave to the Tampa officers. According to police reports, later that same day, Tampa police officers spotted a car on North 40th Street that matched the description of the stolen car.
Tampa police pulled the car over and Wilkerson was in fact driving the car with a 19-year-old acquaintance traveling in the passenger seat. When the officer began questioning Wilkerson, she claimed that she was on leave from the Army, as she is a member of the Army reserve and had borrowed the car from a friend. At the time, she did not know the car had been reported stolen.
As the questioning continued, Wilkerson took out her phone and video recorded the traffic stop. She then posted the video on Instagram where the claimed that police pointed a gun at her head even though she was complying with their orders. She said on the video:
“I was scared and in fear with my life.”
The video drew more than 50,000 views. However, Tampa police countered the criticism from her video by willingly releasing body camera footage of the incident. In it, police officers can be heard speaking politely to Wilkerson and the passenger.
According to Tampa police, the officer who initially pulled over the stolen car called for backup before even getting out and approaching the car. The officer initially drew his weapon because he did not know whether the occupants of the stolen car were armed or not. They reiterated that at no point was a gun pointed at Wilkerson’s head.
The police take extra precautions with stolen cars because they are often used in other crimes. Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan said in a statement:
“The officer put his gun in a low ready where it’s not pointed directly at the person, but it’s already out and can be used and easily raised if they have to defend themselves.”
The police said that Wilkerson’s Instagram post misrepresented what happened and Wilkerson later removed the video she posted to Instagram. Police confirmed that both Wilkerson and the passenger were cooperative throughout the whole process. After the investigation was complete, the police impounded the stolen car and released both women.
“I want the good people who support the police to start stepping up,” said Tampa police Chief Brain Dugan. https://t.co/LqwxCXlEFi
— Tampa Bay Times (@TB_Times) June 23, 2020
Upon further investigation, Tampa police detectives discovered that Wilkerson paid $200 to her friend so that she could use her license to rent the car. They also discovered that the credit card number Wilkerson used to rent the car belonged to an Indiana resident who was still in possession of the original card.
Due to these discoveries, on Tuesday, Hillsborough County Sheriff’s deputies arrested Wilkerson on at her new address on Zachary Circle in Riverview. She was booked at the Orient Road Jail, where she was the released on a $10,000 bail.
Prior to her arrest, she spoke out about her alleged mistreatment from the police and called for people to support a GoFundMe campaign to help pay for her legal and moving fees. So far, it has raised more than $7,000.
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Law Enforcement Today recently brought you another incident in which false claims against police were made. Here it is again.
Recently, rioters took to Grant Park in an attempt to destroy the Christopher Columbus Statue which they believe stands for white supremacy.
Officers were called in to protect the statute and disperse the crowd. Members of that crowd began throwing objects and attacking them.
One attack may well have left an officer blinded.
Enter Miracle Boyd, a poor teenager minding her business in the crowd and trying to calm tensions. Boyd was merely trying to help everyone when a big bad officer came along and punched her in the face for no reason at all, supposedly knocking a tooth out.
In the original video, that she now deleted, she said her teeth was hit by her own phone.
— Brandon W (@RobinRuHood) July 19, 2020
At least, that was the story when this incident happened.
A couple of weeks later, she stated it never happened.
She’s laughing at everyone who believed her, including 25th Ward Alderman Byron Sigcho-Lopez, who said after the alleged assault:
“We need to change our way to approach public safety, the way that we approach this kind of situation, because we can’t have teenagers – exemplary teenagers -being brutalized, you know, participating in their freedom to speak.”
Another video, from May of this year, has surfaced of BLM activist #MiracleBoyd admitting to assaulting Chicago police officers and vandalizing private businesses. At the end of May, thousands of people marched through the Loop to protest in memory of George Floyd.Protesters could be seen setting cars on fire, breaking into stores and looting. A lot of the violence happened on State Street and Michigan Avenue but also took place throughout the city.This shows us the TRUE character of this so-called “peaceful” protester who will be having a press conference tomorrow. Her Facebook page and videos have been scrubbed in an attempt to hide her previous unlawful actions and participation in assaulting CPD officers. Will the media report the whole story….or just continue to keep the “victim” narrative?
Posted by Chicago Code BLUE on Sunday, July 19, 2020
Boyd’s account of what happened received international coverage and the attention of someone who set up a GoFundMe page for donations.
The donations reached over $80,000 before Boyd released a social media post talking about how rich she had just gotten, saying:
“These white people love a sad sob story.”
Her friend, also in the video added:
“Yeah, my friend really did get rich as hell of this [expletive] for real. The police really didn’t do [expletive] but just make her rich as [expletive] for no reason.”
“They lame as hell.”
Although donations have been stopped on the site, it is not clear if GoFundMe will start pulling back donations for those who did donate that want their money back.
Boyd also did not put too much thought into publishing her own cell phone video which shows that she was the instigator.
In Boyd’s video, she is seen screaming at officers and insulting them as they tried to push the rioters back. Boyd is seen trying to go through the line of officers that were preventing people from nearing the statue.
She then sees a black officer which apparently offends her, as she is heard saying:
“And then y’all got black police to.”
She later tried to set officers off by saying:
“Y’all be mad cuz y’all got some [expletive] thrown at y’all.”
Boyd worked hard at trying to intimidate officers and get them to move. A sergeant intervened at one point and ordered everyone to back away.
“And if I don’t? And if I don’t? And if I mother[expletive] don’t. then what?”
Inches from the sergeants face, Boyd continued to yell:
“Whatcha mother[expletive] gonna do? Not a goddamn thing to me. Know that, know that, know that.”
Boyd’s video continues, showing her trying to physically intervene with an arrest of a rioter. Then we see her repeated attempts to try to go through the police lines toward the statue while antagonizing every officer she can.
She approaches one officer, who, it appears, slaps the phone out of Boyd’s hand. The video does not clearly show what happened, and some have said that the officer punched her in the face.
After the incident, Boyd said:
“There is no way I should have left a protest abused and battered exercising my freedom of speech and freedom to assemble. I am disgusted. I never thought I would have become a victim of the biggest gang in America.”
Boyd had said that she had done nothing to instigate the situation, she had just spoken about anti-violence to a group when the “protests” occurred.
I mean there’s the video of her talking about the crimes she committed and stealing money off the white people. Bragging about the go fund me money.
— Strike (@Avalos2418) July 21, 2020
Apparently, Boyd is confused on a few fronts. First, a peaceful assembly is when a group of people get together and talk like civilized people without intent to destroy or harm. A riot is when a group of people get together to commit violence and cause harm.
Two very distinctive things, and with those definitions being confused, perhaps she is also confused on the term de-escalation. De-escalation, in short, is when someone tries to calm a situation down, escalation/intimidation is when someone intentionally tries to make something bad happen by threatening, yelling, and getting in people’s faces.
Boyd still claims that she was unlawfully struck by a police officer during the riot. However, she is now altering the story and calling everyone who believed her “lame.”
Now that Boyd has a new education in some important police terms, perhaps she can become the exemplary teenager that the city leaders believe that she is.
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Author: Jenna Curren