When police officers arrived at his home in Ocoee in 2019, Jean Samuel Celestin asked them if they were real police officers.
The 33-year-old had been suffering from mental illness since he was 17, and was unable to process information properly. So when his family called the police for help with a panic attack Celestin was experiencing, they told the officers about Celestin’s mental illnesses.
Still, officer Christopher Bonner chuckled in response to Celestin’s question, according to bodycam footage. ‘We’re not going to play this game, okay?’ Bonner later told Celestin.
When you join The Haitian Times family, you’ll get unlimited digital access to high-quality journalism about Haiti and Haitians you won’t get anywhere else. We’ve been at this for 20 years and pride ourselves on representing you, our diaspora experience and a holistic view of Haiti that larger media doesn’t show you.
Join now or renew to get:
— Instant access to one-of-kind stories and special reports
— Local news from our communities (especially New York and Florida)
— Profiles of Haitians at the top of their fields
— Downloadable lists and resources about Haitian culture
— Membership merch, perks and special invitations
First-time subscribers also receive a special welcome gift handmade in Haiti by expert artisans! Do it for the culture and support Black-owned businesses.
If you’re seeing this message but you’re already a subscriber, you can log in for immediate access to this story.