During an arrest, video captured South Bend, Indiana police officers quoting a
Ku Klux Klan scene from the film Django Unchained.
On Wednesday (December 18), officers arrested Marko Mosgrove who had been charged with burglary, intimidation, carrying a handgun without a license and resisting law enforcement, which stemmed from a December 3 shooting, according to documents.
Before he was arrested, Mosgrove used his phone to record a live video of the incident on his Facebook page. The video shows him walking out of his home with his arms raised and being taken into custody. The officers subsequently enter the house to conduct a search and then a few minutes later, they notice the phone recording.
While the screen then goes black, the audio continues recording and that’s when one of the officers mentions a skull mask.
“You know what’s a good idea for your kid is a skull mask. In case you have to shoot a guy,” one officer is heard saying while laughing.
“This is how you rob banks, alright,” another chimes in.
After making reference to the comic book character The Punisher, the first officer says, “I can’t see [expletive] [expletive] out of this thing.”
Another officer asks if he’s referring to the film The Boondock Saints.
“No, Django Unchained,” he replies.
South Bend police spokesman Ken Garcia has since released a statement (via the South Bend Tribune). “The video is being investigated by the South Bend Police Department’s Office of Professional Standards,” he said. “The department is taking this matter very seriously.”
This is just the latest example of police misconduct taking place in mayor and Democratic presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg’s home city. Mayor Pete had previously been criticized for his mishandling of and reported underwhelming response to the killing of 54-year-old Eric Logan, a Black father who was shot-and-killed by a white South Bend police officer on Father’s Day 2019.
Buttigieg also caught flack for demanding the resignation of Darryl Boykins, South Bend’s first Black police chief, in 2012. It’s something even he himself considered his “first serious mistake as mayor.”
Django Unchained follows the story of a freed slave in the South who attempts to free his wife. The scene the officers referred to depicts KKK members struggling to see through hoods that have eye holes that are not properly cut.