Police Officer Apologizes To Houston Texans' Ryan Moats For His Actions, Then Resigns

I didn't get a chance to post this last week, but some of you may not know the story of Ryan Moats. He's a professional football player for the Houston Texans and he was rushing to the hospital with his family because his mother-in-law was dying and they were trying to get there to see her before she passed. Along the way, Ryan went through a red light and was pulled over:

A Dallas police officer drew his gun during a traffic stop of Houston Texans running back Ryan Moats last week in which the officer kept Moats from going to the hospital room of his dying mother-in-law, the Dallas Morning News reported.

According to the report, the officer, identified as Robert Powell, stopped the vehicle being driven by Moats in the hospital parking lot for going through a red light. Powell later told his superiors that he drew his gun but did not point it at anyone, according to the Morning News.

Moats's wife and another relative ignored Powell's command to stop and went inside the hospital, and Moats's wife reportedly was by her mother's bedside when she died. Ryan Moats and another man remained outside while Powell lectured Moats, wrote a ticket and threatened to arrest him even after being told that by Moats that his mother-in-law was near death inside the hospital. After a delay of about 13 minutes, according to the Morning News, Powell allowed Moats to go inside the hospital, that after hospital staff members and another police officer interceded.

I can understand the officer pulling him over for the traffic violation, but after it was pretty evident what was going on, why didn't he do the right thing? Why did he pull his gun? Did I mention it happened in Texas? I know how hard it is to police America too, but if he was "white" would he have had the same reaction?

Anyway, this story was eerily reminiscent of the Robbie Tolan story that took place in Houston. Tolan was shot in his own driveway for nothing.

A Profile on Racial profiling: Robbie Tolan is shot with his parents in their pajamas on their own property

Thankfully Moats didn't get shot. The police officer was suspended. He then apologized and now has quit the force.

The Dallas police officer who kept NFL running back Ryan Moats from seeing his dying mother-in-law reportedly has resigned. The officer, Robert Powell, resigned today, his attorney told the Associated Press.

Powell had been placed on paid administrative leave following the incident, in which Powell lectured Moats, threatened to arrest him and ticketed him in a hospital parking lot after Moats's vehicle went through a red light en route to the hospital. Moats tried to explain to Powell that his mother-in-law was near death but, after being delayed approximately 13 minutes by Powell, Moats did not arrive at her bedside until after she'd died. Dallas police officials had issued apologies and had said that Powell acted improperly during the traffic stop.

Moats and his wife said during a nationally televised interview this week that Powell had pointed his gun at Moats's wife, Tamishia, during the incident. Powell reportedly had told his superiors that he'd drawn his gun but hadn't pointed it. The Moatses said they would accept Powell's apology.

The Dallas Morning News had called for Powell's dismissal in an editorial. According to the Morning News, Powell issued a written statement today through his attorneys.

"With a heavy heart and great sadness, I resigned from the Dallas Police Department this morning," Powell said in the written statement, according to the Morning News. "I made this decision in the hope that my resignation will allow the Dallas Police Department, my fellow officers, and the citizens of Dallas to better reflect on this experience, learn from the mistakes made, and move forward."

Powell indicated he still hoped to speak to the Moats family to apologize directly, and he apologized to fellow officers.

"I have sincere respect and admiration for the men and women of the Dallas Police Department and the work they perform daily," Powell said in his written statement, according to the Morning News, "and I wish them well."

Powell had apologized to the Moats family in the form of a previous written statement. Tamishia Moats said during an appearance Monday on ABC's "Good Morning America" that she hoped to hear directly from Powell.

Powell said during an interview with a Dallas television station this week that he'd handled the situation improperly and regretted his actions. He said during the TV interview that he feared being fired because of the incident.

Comments

We welcome relevant, respectful comments. Please refer to our Terms of Service for information on our posting policy.