Los Angeles, California / USA - August 15, 2019: A police officer watches over a scene.

“I want you to drag me!” Woman tells Tampa cop – who does and gets fired

A Tampa police officer was fired after shocking footage showed him dragging a woman across the ground who refused to walk into the department’s jail booking area after arresting her for refusing to leave a medical center.

Woman arrested for trespassing refuses to cooperate, says: “I want you to drag me”

Now-former Tampa Police Department officer Gregory Damon responded along with other officers to a call at the Tampa Family Health Center on Nov. 17 about a woman who was sleeping outside the property and was ignoring requests to leave, according to people at the medical office.

The same woman, who has not been identified, had previously been warned to stay away from the property, and was arrested by Damon for trespassing at the location in October, according to police, the New York Post reported.

Officer gave woman multiple opportunities to cooperate

Things escalated when Damon and the suspect arrived at the police department. The woman refused to exit the squad car. 

Damon forewarned the uncooperative woman: “I’m going to drag you out of this car.”

Body cam footage showed her yelling at the officer: “I want you to drag me!”

Finally, the officer appears to become fed up, takes her by the arm, and pulls her out of the vehicle. Damon then proceeded to give the woman what she asked for. He pulled her across the parking lot of the central booking office, the Daily Mail reported.

As Damon drags the woman across the parking area,  she continues to berate him using vulgar and obscene language.

At one point, Damon stops dragging her and gives her another opportunity, loudly telling her: “Stand up.”

The woman still refused to stand.

Damon then continues dragging the woman. The distance from the squad car to the jail doorway was roughly 20 feet. At the door, Damon pressed the call button, which summoned two Hillsborough County jail deputies, which is run by the sheriff’s office, to assist in bringing the woman into the room.

Jail booking records indicated that the unnamed suspect is 46 years old and provided her address as a Tampa facility that houses homeless people. Records indicated she was released days later to a mental health facility. She is still facing charges in the criminal case against her, which is currently making its way through the courts.

Cop fired for dragging female suspect into jail

After officials from the Tampa Police Department reviewed the footage, officer Gregory Damon was fired following an internal investigation, the agency said. In a press release, Tampa police called Damon’s actions unbecoming of a senior officer.

The agency said the woman’s behavior and language were no excuse for Damon’s actions. “Rather than remaining professional, Damon himself made rude and derogatory comments to the arrestee,” the agency said.

The agency cited a revised policy in 2013 that forbids officers from dragging uncooperative suspects on the ground, police said. Officers instead should seek assistance from jail booking staff or other law enforcement, ABC reported.

“Professionalism is not only expected, it is demanded in every encounter our officers have with the public,” said interim Police Chief Lee Bercaw in a written statement, “regardless of the arrestee being uncooperative or unpleasant in return.”

“As law enforcement officers, we are held to a higher standard,” Bercaw added.

Damon had been with the Tampa Police Department since 2016, CBS reported.