Last month a story of a Black jogger stopped by Florida police in Volusia County because he allegedly matched a suspect description. The jogger stopped was Joseph Griffin an army veteran and former military police officer was invited to help the department with implicit bias training by Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood invited him to help the department with its implicit bias training.
Griffin says the encounter was one of the scariest moments of his life. The incident started when Griffin was stopped by a deputy because he fit the description of a man who had stolen lawn equipment according to WESH 2.
Deputies handcuffed Griffin and explaining what was going on. Griffin said he was scared during the entire encounter.
“I was scared,” Griffin said. The sheriff’s office invited Griffin to talk to the department’s staff during a discussion about implicit bias. Many social justice advocates talked about how the police judge people based on how a person is dressed.
“Empathy. Sympathy. Treat the person you are detaining as if they are your daughter or son being detained,” Griffin said.
“You have to listen and you have to understand the other folks’ perspective whether Black, Hispanic, rich, poor,” Chitwood said.