IOWA CITY (CBSLA.com) — A student and football player at the University of Iowa revealed on Facebook that police drew their guns on him while he was playing Pokemon Go in a park after mistaking him for a bank robbery suspect.
Faith Ekakitie, a senior at the University of Iowa, wrote this on Facebook:
“Today I was surrounded and searched by approximately five Iowa City Police Officers. My pockets were checked, my backpack was opened up and searched carefully, and I was asked to lift up my shirt while they searched my waistband. Not once did they identify themselves to me as Iowa City Police officers, but with four gun barrels staring me in the face, I wouldn’t dare question the authority of the men and woman in front of me. This is what happened from my point of view.”
Ekakitie wrote in his post that at least five Iowa City police officers stopped him as they searched for a suspect in a nearby bank robbery.
Sgt. Jorey Bailey of the Iowa City Police Department told ESPN that police stopped a man named Faith Ekakitie because he matched the description of the robber, who is also black and was also dressed in black clothes.
“I don’t think race played a factor in this, nor does it in circumstances like this because of the detailed description, the location given by the person and the short time span in which this all occurred,” Bailey added.
Ekakitie also wrote, “I am thankful to be alive, and I do now realize, that it very well could have been me, a friend of mine, my brother, your cousin, your nephew etc. Misunderstandings happen all the time and just like that things can go south very quickly. It is extremely sad that our society has brainwashed us all to the point where we can’t feel safe being approached by the police officers in our respective communities. Not all police officers are out to get you, but at the same time, not all people who fit a criminal profile are criminals. So with that, I would like the thank the Iowa City Police department for handling a sensitive situation very professionally. “
Ekakitie played in 12 games for the Hawkeyes last season.