A woman arrested on a Wildwood, New Jersey, beach near East Schellinger Avenue over Memorial Day weekend spoke out in an interview Wednesday on “Good Morning America,” after a video of the ordeal quickly trended online.
“I’ve been really anxious over it,” 20-year-old Emily Weinman, the mother of a 1-year-old daughter, told the television show. “Kind of upset to hear the negative things people say about me. They see one video and one situation and they’re saying all this negative stuff about a person. One situation doesn’t define me.”
Never mind that the video footage shows that Weinman may have been a victim of police aggression.
Weinman was approached and struck by police after they stopped her for suspicion of underage drinking, ABC 6 reports.
A bystander’s video showed an officer wrestling the woman to the ground and striking her twice, before wrestling her to the ground a second time.
Weinman told GMA that she has experienced pain in her back and neck since the incident, and said the entire ordeal has taken an emotional toll on her.
Police allege the woman had an open bottle of alcohol on the beach. Weinman said she did have alcohol, but the container was sealed.
Weinman said she gave officers two breathalyzer tests that came back negative, but the officers wouldn’t leave.
“I ask them, ‘Do you guys have anything better to do?’ There’s so much stuff going on and you’re trying to stop people for underage drinking and you see I didn’t drink,” Weinman said., admitting that she had “a little attitude.”
“He was like, ‘That’s it.,” she continued. “I was going to let you go, but now I’m going to write you up…it just escalated to that point to where they wanted to lock me up because I wouldn’t give them my name because I did everything they said to do.”
The woman is facing several charges including resisting arrest, aggravated assault, and assaulting a police officer by spitting. As to the spitting, Weinman alleged that she had gotten sand in her mouth after her head was pushed into the ground by the officer, and so she subsequently “turned around to spit it out.”
Cape May County Prosecutor Jeffrey Sutherland reportedly said that the officers in the violent confrontation have not been charged with any wrongdoing, and are not expected to be.
The woman’s attorney, Steven Dicht, said on the talk show that the charges against his client escalated after the video was widely distributed.
“The Saturday she was taken into custody, she was in custody for about 40 minutes, she was charged with misdemeanors. After the bystander video came out and started getting attention, that’s when they charged her with the aggravated assault,” Dicht said.
[Feature photo: Youtube screenshot/NJ.com]