COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Columbus police have launched an investigation after a video went viral over the weekend of an officer threatening to charge an 11-year-old girl with producing child pornography.
According to a department statement, the incident is being investigated by the Department of the Inspector General, “which investigates complaints of misconduct and/or excessive use of force by sworn personnel.”
The video, which has not been verified by NBC4, appears to have been posted sometime Sunday, but it is not clear when the incident happened.
The video, captured by a home security system, showed two officers responding to a home at night. The 1:35 clip begins with an officer knocking on the home’s door, then knocking again after no one answers the door.
At 50 seconds into the video, a man inside the home opened the door and spoke with police. He told officers he wanted them to respond earlier in the day, but a timeframe was not specified. A caption on the video claims a call was made to police at 6, but officers didn’t respond until midnight.
The man said he initially asked for police to respond in order to talk to the child about what the caption claims to be an online predator situation.
The man said to the officer that he realized there probably isn’t much they can do about it, which is when the police officer said, “I mean, she can probably get charged with child porn.”
The man then said the girl is 11 years old, to which the officer responded, “She’s creating it, right… It doesn’t matter. She’s still making porn.”
“No she’s not,” the man said. “She’s being manipulated by a grown-*** adult over the internet.”
“Is she still taking pictures, though?” the officer asked, at which point the man told the officers to have a nice evening and thanked them for responding to the home before going back inside.
“Are you serious right now?” the man said as the door closed. The officers then leave the property.
NBC4 is not airing or linking to the video to protect the identity of the child who may be the victim of a sex-based crime.
The department’s statement also said the online incident involving the child is being investigated by sexual assault unit detectives.