Earlier this week Caren Z Turner was called by her daughter to come pick her up after the police had pulled her and her friends over and impounded the vehicle they were driving in. Normally, under these circumstances, most parents would simply arrive, try to get a sense of what was happening, and then take their child home (or give them a good talking-to depending on what happened). Caren, however, who worked as a police commissioner at Port Authority in New York decided to try a… different approach.
“I'm here as a concerned citizen and friend of the mayor,” she began saying as she approached the policeman who had pulled her daughter over. The officer responds:
“The driver has all the information, he'll tell you all you need to know.”
“No, no, no. I'm involved. Trust me. I'm very involved,” Caren says before flashing a Port Authority gold badge and then continuing, “I am the commissioner of the Port Authority, and I am heading up over 4,000 police officers, okay? Let's hear -- why were they pulled over, first of all?”
“Miss—” the officer says, struggling to get a word in edgewise before Caren interrupts once more.
“No, no, no, don't call me 'Miss.' I'm 'Commissioner.' Thank you.”
During the conversation Caren tries to force the officer to tell her what happened, but the officer is insistent that it’s not important for her to know given that it’s not her car nor her daughter’s car, and ultimately has nothing to do with her.
“I'm so sorry, thank you for your concern for my safety. I don't need it. You can't put a sentence together, sorry. That's pathetic. You are a disappointment,” she tells the officers as her irritation begins to show. But things really get heated when the officer tells her she “may” escort the group away.
“You may not tell me when to take my child,” she can be heard shouting. “You may shut the f*ck up and not tell me when I may take my kid and her friends, who are Ph.D. students from M.I.T. and Yale. You may tell me nothing, because you told me nothing. Shame on both of you.”
"This isn't going to go down nicely. You're not a nice person," the commissioner, who was decidedly not nice, says. She was right, it didn't go nicely -- for her. She's out of a job. https://t.co/FY5RgknddE— Jillian Jorgensen (@Jill_Jorgensen) April 24, 2018
Caren Z Turner has now had to resign as police commissioner after it turned out that the cruiser’s dashcam was recording the whole conversation. Afterwards, the police inevitably forwarded the tape to the relevant authorities. Caren resigned before any disciplinary action could be taken, but that hasn’t stopped the story from going viral. Meanwhile local police chief has praised the officers involved saying he was “extremely proud of the composure, poise and restraint” they exhibited.