Traffic stops have been especially sensitive lately, as we all know. This Tampa traffic stop embodies the degree of stress that these sort of interactions can result in. A young woman, Joneshia Wilkerson, was just returning from an Army deployment, when she was pulled over while driving a borrowed car.
Apparently, the Nissan Altima which he friend lent her, had been reported as stolen by Hertz rental company. When a Tampa PD ran the plate, and saw the red flag, he drew his gun and pointed it at the ground by the vehicle.
TPD officer pointed a gun aiming directly at the head of a 23 year old unarmed innocent black woman, Joneshia Wilkerson after alleging she was driving a stolen vehicle.
THIS IS OUTRAGEOUS!!!! pic.twitter.com/LkSkdSU4Qs
— StanceGrounded (@_SJPeace_) June 22, 2020
WIlkerson filmed the interaction from her perspective, and the officer also recorded the interaction on his body-cam.
Thankfully, nobody was hurt. As backup arrived on the scene, the situation was eventually deescalated. When the incident was investigated, it turned out that the friend had bought the Nissan Altima used from Hertz. However, they stopped paying the financing bills, and so Hertz just reported the car stolen.
As Hertz has been struggling to stay afloat in light of the reduction of travel, the company has taken to selling off their fleet of cars, in a last ditch bet to keep the lights on. In the meantime, the same economic turmoil dragging them under has affected everyone else.
Hertz marking cars as stolen, that were in fact only defaulted on, should be seen as an incredibly dangerous and misguided action. This confrontation really underscores the climate of these times, and it’s a good thing that nothing worse happened.