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Warren, Michigan police officer Bernadette Najor was caught on tape cutting a weave out of a young woman’s head. The woman, 22-year-old Charda Gregory was in police custody after being arrested for allegedly trashing a motel room. Gregory claims someone put something into her drink, she blacked out and she woke up in an unfamiliar motel room and was then arrested for destroying said room.

The videotaped footage shows Najor pushing Gregory against a wall twice as two other officers look on. Najor then puts Gregory into a restraint chair and proceeds to use scissors to cut the weave out of Gregory’s head as Gregory kicks her legs and squirms. According to WPTV, many jails require prisoners to remove clip-on extensions because such extensions could be used to commit suicide, but Gregory’s weave was sewn in to her actual braided hair.

Najor was fired.  The other officers present during the incident are being investigated. “There’s a real simple thing: it’s called right and wrong.  And to me this is something that I won’t tolerate, I don’t think the citizens of Warren will tolerate it,” said Warren Police Commissioner Jere Green. “I don’t buy that’s the proper way to treat a human being.  I don’t think it’s decent, I don’t think there was any reason to do it, and when I look at it – that bothers me.”

All of the charges against Gregory have been dismissed.

Follow Demetria Irwin on Twitter at @Love_Is_Dope and connect with her on Facebook.

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23 Comments

  1. ScriptTease

    Oh good grief. D@mn the hair weave, is this what the uproar is about, cutting out some freaking weave? The pushing of the woman against the wall was my issue, but at the same time, we really cannot say what was going on. SMDH @ weave worshipers.

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    • Guess

      I realize that there is a bigger issue here of assault that pretty much speaks for itself. I just want to address your statement about the issue of removing her weave. If removing the weave was normal protocol in this circumstance, the officer would not have been fired.

      Would we be understanding of the humiliation suffered by this weave-shaming business if a black businessman was somehow caught up in a situation resulting in a false arrest was tied down while a white man or woman forcibly cut out his toupee when it was not within normal protocol? Or even if this happened to someone of any color or gender other than a Black woman?? Of course not! But for whatever reason, it seems just as easy to shame, denigrate and hate one another as Black women as it is to watch others shame us.

      For some, wearing weave is a matter of preference. However, many people have hair & scalp conditions which make them feel less than comfortable with their own hair and, in some cases, acutely ashamed. It’s funny how people never stop to consider that some of the women who choose to wear weaves have alopecia, psoriasis and other derma/scalp issues while others have had their hair irreparably damaged as a child by a caregiver or misguided hairdresser.

      The idea of of trivializing these challenges or the malformed assumption that Black women worship weave is ridiculous. It’s even more interesting how we have so much empathy for white women who suffer from edge-pattern baldness, etc., but blame the victim when it comes to our sisters.

      Black women should be applauded for having the creativity, innovation, imagination and enterprise to not only respond to their hair challenges, but to develop hair care as an underground revenue stream. It seems as though the trend is moving toward natural hair care and protective styles, such as sew-in weaves. So, we’re getting there, but in the meantime let’s show some compassion & respect for us.

      Let’s not forget that many of us suffered from damaged hair well prior to the popularity of weave. Weave is the response, not the impetus.

      Food for thought…

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    • Marie

      Thank you for a beautiful, well written response. Up until the age of 10, my aunt was doing my hair. She pulled the edges of my hair so tight, that my hair begin to come out. Even at the age of 43, my hair is very thin on the sides. This was not of my doing. I’ve tried a few things to regrow my hair, but not much success. I have never worn weave, and I don’t plan to do so; however, I understand the reasons why they could be wearing weave, especially if they’ve had others do harm to them.

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  2. Sachi

    Hard to watch. Agree that the pushing her against the wall is the big legal issue here. Removing the weave is protocol (although could have been handled better). People hide all kinds of contraband in their bodies so cops have to make sure everyone is uniform. If we calm down a bit, we can understand the reasons behind cutting the weave. However, take her to a private room, maybe have a black woman do it remove the weave. My issue is with the pushing. Also , this woman trashed a hotel room, not hurt someone. They are treating her like an animal.

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  3. This scene is disturbing and feels rape-like, even without the sound. My attention is not to offend or trivialize real rape, trust. But while possibly under the influence of a substance she didn’t willingly take, this woman is being forcibly handled and strapped down while having something that belongs to her and is a part of her (even if only temporarily) destroyed and taken without cause.

    It seems to me like the woman was trying to humiliate and/or teach her a lesson by stripping her of her “crowning glory”, knowing we don’t play about our hair!! ::sigh::

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