On June 19, two police officers pulled over a white sedan in Orlando, Florida. When the cops realized the driver they pulled over was Aramis Ayala, Florida's first and only black state attorney, the officers gave a rambling and extremely satisfying attempt at an explanation for why they had stopped her.
In bodycam footage of the encounter, streaming above via The Independent, the officer on the driver's side realizes that Ayala is a public servant from her I.D. "What agency are you with?" he asks. Her response: “I’m the state attorney."
From there, the officer quickly tries to explain his rationale for the stop: the car's tags didn't come back when he ran them through the system, and she had too much tint on her car windows. At one point, Ayala smirks a little bit, then asks for the names of the increasingly sheepish officers.
The Orlando Police Department issued a statement on the incident: "[The Department] allows the running of tags for official business only, and this is done routinely on patrol.
"In regards to the video, which was released by the Orlando Police Department last month, the officers stated the tag did not come back as registered to any vehicle. As you can see in the video, the window tint was dark, and officers would not have been able to tell who, or how many people, were in the vehicle."
In a statement of her own, Ayala denied any wrongdoing, while conceding that the stop was lawful. "My goal is to have a constructive and mutually respectful relationship between law enforcement and the community," she wrote. "I look forward to sitting down to have an open dialogue with the Chief of Orlando Police Department regarding how this incident impacts that goal."
Ayala was subjected to racist death threats this year when she announced that she would not seek the death penalty in any case. Florida Governor Rick Scott responded by reassigning two dozen of her cases to another prosecutor, and Ayala sued to have them reinstated. Her case is still before the Florida Supreme Court.