Pennsylvania Teenager Says Police Beat Her Excessively

| by Amanda Schallert

A 17-year-old girl in Pennsylvania has said that police hit her excessively after stopping her for being out past curfew Wednesday night.

Merceedez Wright, who is now in the hospital with injuries from police, said that she was out with her friends getting ice cream past Clairton’s 10 p.m. curfew when officers tried to stop her, according to At the time, the friends were trying to go back to the ice cream shop to pick up a bag and a phone they had forgotten when they were allegedly stopped by police.

Wright said she ran from the police, and then tried to resist them after she was allegedly tackled.

"I didn't think cops would do that to me because I'm a girl. And I didn't have anything on me. I was just trying to walk away from the situation," Wright said. "I was terrified. I thought I was going to be getting beaten up for hours."

"They both just tackled me to the ground and smashed my face into the ground with their feet and their legs. Then they started pulling my hair and pushing me and stuff, and I was screaming real loud," she said.

Clariton police declined to comment on the incident.

Wright’s friends also voiced concerns about the amount of force police officers allegedly used to stop Wright.

"(The officer) ran full force at her and she ran from him," said Destiny Hester, one of Wright’s friends at the scene. "They pounced on her, then started kicking her and pulling her hair."

Wright was injured in her trachea, esophagus and neck during the incident.

"She's a cheerleader, she's a lifeguard at the Clairton pool, she was just on prom court," said Audelia Amoah, Wright’s mother. "She's a good kid."