Crime & Courts

Officer involved in 'vegetation' traffic stop no longer with Winfield Police Department

Facebook video shows traffic stop of black man in rural Kansas town

A video posted to Facebook by Rudy Samuels shows the traffic stop in Winfield, Kan. where officers found 'vegetation' on his window and forcibly removed him from his vehicle.
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A video posted to Facebook by Rudy Samuels shows the traffic stop in Winfield, Kan. where officers found 'vegetation' on his window and forcibly removed him from his vehicle.

The officer at the center of the "vegetation" traffic stop in Winfield is no longer with the department, Winfield Police Chief Brett Stone confirmed on Friday.

Officer Sean Skov left the department Thursday. Stone couldn't say if it was because of the traffic stop. He also declined to say if Skov left on his own volition or if he was let go.

When a black man was pulled over by police in Winfield on May 13, his car was searched after Skov said he found "vegetation" in the window, video shows.

Rudy Samuel went live on Facebook at 5:40 p.m. that day and said in the video that police told him he had been pulled over for allegedly failing to signal a turn within 100 feet.

The video shows an officer at a patrol cruiser as Samuel talks about being pulled over. When the officer returns, the video shows, he uses a hand without a glove to pick up what he calls "vegetation stuff" from the driver's window seal.

Samuel tells the officer that the vegetation is "tree stuff."

The officer said he was going to put it in a bag, and Samuel said, "I don't even smoke."

When the officer returns, he tells Samuel to get out of his car, the video shows. Samuel said the officer has to test it first, but the officer replies that, "I'll test it here in a little bit, OK, I ain't got to test it right now."

The officer repeats that Samuel must get out of the car, and as Samuel asks why, the officer forcibly removes him, video shows.

The video goes dark, but the microphone picks up the officer saying that Samuel is being detained so police can search the vehicle. Samuel replies that he does not consent to a search, saying police must test the vegetation first.

The video abruptly ends after someone picked up the phone.

No drugs were found in the car, no case was opened and Samuel was not arrested, NewsCow-KSOK reported. Two warnings were issued after the stop.

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