Washington DC police use dance-off to defuse confrontation between teenagers
3 hrs ago
A police officer has defused a confrontation between teenagers in Washington DC not by force, but by dance.
Police broke up a group of fighting teenagers on Monday (local time), asking them to clear out of the area.
Instead of leaving, according to the Washington Post, 17-year-old Aaliyah Taylor approached a female officer while playing the hit song Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae) on her phone and doing her version of the signature shoulder-swaying dance.
Rather than responding with force, the officer laughed and said she had better dance moves than that, Ms Taylor told the Washington Post.
"Instead of us fighting, she tried to turn it around and make it something fun," Ms Taylor said.
"I never expected cops to be that cool. There are some good cops.
"I mostly hold my head down when I dance, so I didn't really see her.
"But when I looked at the video after, I was like 'Oh, she has some moves'."
By the time the resulting dance-off was over — with both sides reportedly claiming victory — the tension had lifted.
President Barack Obama singled out the dance-off as a model for police looking to build relationships with neighbourhoods — a pressing issue as outrage at police brutality has grown in the past year.
"Who knew community policing could involve the Nae Nae? Great example of police having fun while keeping us safe," he tweeted.
Washington Police chief Cathy Lanier said the dance-off was no exception.
"Engaging with residents thru dance is part of our dedicated community policing effort in the nation's capital," she tweeted.
Mayor Muriel Bowser also praised the move, posting on Facebook that "DC has innovative ways to keep our community #saferstronger".