Wife of former NFL player recalls terrifying stop by officer

How did we get here? Wife of former NFL player recalls terrifying stop by officer

Across the NFL, players, teams and owners protested in some way or showed solidarity during the national anthem.

As people debate whether it's right or wrong to kneel during the national anthem, lost in the debate is why former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick started the trend of kneeling in protest in the first place.

“Basically this was a public display of us wanting to shed light of what is happening to minorities in this country,” said Tamisha Moats.

They are protesting what they call police injustice towards black males.

Moats knows the subject well.

She is married to former Houston Texan, Ryan Moats.

They became a national story when they were pulled over eight years ago by former Dallas police officer Robert Powell.

Dash camera video captured what he told the couple.

"Shut up. Shut up or I am going to take you to jail for running a red light," the recording said.

Tamisha tried to explain to the officer what was happening.

“Please, my mother is dying," she said.

Tamisha and Ryan were rushing to Baylor Hospital in Plano because Tamisha's mother was dying and doctors wanted to give the couple a chance say goodbye.

Dallas officer Powell pulled in after them in the hospital parking lot, ordered them out of the car with his gun drawn. Ryan tried to explain what was happening

"My mother in law is dying. Can’t you give me a ticket later. She is dying," he said.

Other officers, nurses and doctors begged the officer to let the couple go,  But Powell detained Ryan Moats and Tamisha's grandfather.

He then berated them and gave them a ticket.

Ryan never got the chance to say goodbye to his beloved mother-in-law.

"It was extremely traumatizing,” said Moats.

Officer Powell resigned.

The Moats decided to not sue, but instead tried to work with police to make changes.

Tamisha says it’s disheartening that eight years later tensions between police and the community have only gotten worse.

She says the only solution is to try to come together.

"People have a fear of the police especially if you are a minority. You have fear of the police and I think the police have fear of us and we have to work together to combat this issue or it will only get worse,” said Moats.

Sports has sometimes helped bring about social change.

Tamisha Moats hopes the protests and the conversations will lead to more than just debate.

In fact over the years she and her husband have reached out to Officer Powell hoping that he will meet with them so they can work together and be an example that others can follow. 

© 2017 WFAA-TV


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