A Black woman has given birth to her baby two weeks after a Kansas City police officer knelt on her back while she was pregnant. Deja Stallings delivered her daughter two weeks early through an emergency C-section, her attorney Stacy Shaw told The Kansas City Star. The infant was born with an elevated heart rate and is currently in the hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
“Please lift up this newborn baby who is completely innocent!” Shaw wrote on Twitter. “Deja was 9 months pregnant when a KCPD Officer knelt on her back after throwing her to the ground.”
Shaw also asked for prayers for the newborn and said that the baby is in “distress due to KCPD Officer Blayne Newton kneeling” on Stallings’ back.
Shaw added that the 25-year-old mother had to go to the hospital three times after she was forced face-down and knelt on during her arrest.
Video of the incident prompted citywide protests earlier this month, including “The People’s City,” where a group of demonstrators occupied the lawn of city hall. Protesters have also called for Police Chief Rick Smith and Officer Newton to be fired and for the police department’s funds to be reallocated.
“This cannot and will not be dismissed; this double assault on humanity,” Rev. Rodney Williams, president of the NAACP Kansas City chapter, previously said.
“The most recent act of brutality of a pregnant woman [and] an unborn child is yet another example of the culture of brutality, callousness and disregard for the citizens of our community,” added Kevin Woolfolk from the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.
As reported by REVOLT, Stallings was accused of interfering with officers’ arrest of local activist Troy Robertson. She was issued a municipal summons, handcuffed and restrained face-down on the ground while Officer Newton kneeled into her back.
The Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office is currently reviewing the incident.