PHOENIX, AZ (3TV/CBS 5/AP) -- The City of Phoenix organized a community meeting at a downtown church to discuss a videotaped encounter involving police officers who pointed guns and yelled profanities at a black couple after their 4-year-old daughter took a doll from a store.
[GRAPHIC RAW VIDEO: Citizens record on cellphones alleged Phoenix police misconduct]
The meeting started at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and lasted 2.5 hours.
A count of 2,650 people attended this meeting at Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church in Phoenix.
[SPECIAL SECTION: Phoenix Police Misconduct Allegations]
Mayor Kate Gallego and Police Chief Jeri Williams were at the meeting. Both have apologized publicly for the incident.
In the beginning of the meeting, Gallego started the conversation with her apologies to the people of Phoenix.
"I'm deeply sorry for the events that brought us here today," the mayor said. "I asked for this community meeting and Chief Williams' presence so we would have a chance to listen to your thoughts."
Gallego is referring to the community's thoughts on the video released Friday showing officers aiming guns and yelling profane commands at Dravon Ames and his pregnant fiancee, Iesha Harper, as she held their 1-year-old daughter.
When it was time for Chief Williams to introduce herself at the meeting, she listed the multiple reasons why the community gathered for this meeting.
"So, we are here not because of one issue. We are here because of trust. We are here because of transparency. We are here because of accountability. And that is why we are sitting here tonight ready, willing and able to listen to what you have to say in order to take those ideas, in order to take those stories to be a better police department," said Williams. "I do extend my apologies to the family whose gotten less-than-professional service from the Phoenix Police Department, as well as others of you who may have gotten less professional service. I know we're better than that. I know we can do better."
The couple didn't accept the apology and filed a $10 million claim against the city-- alleging civil rights violations. They say their daughter stole a doll from a store without their knowledge.
No charges were filed.
"Nobody should ever try to justify what happened in the video. Nobody!" said Ames as he stood with Harper and their daughter at the meeting. "That's insulting and that hurts. That hurts for our family. That hurts all of us. Mass murderers get walked out without a scratch," he continued as the crowd applauded.
Others who have been negatively impacted by Phoenix police behavior include the family of Jacob Harris, a man who was shot by police in January. His father had a direct message for Chief Williams and her department.
"My son was Jacob Harris. He was 19. He was shot in the back by the Phoenix Police Department. Tom Horne had to sue the City of Phoenix to get the police report," said Roland Harris, Jr., Jacob Harris' dad. "So Chief [Williams], you want to talk about transparency? We had to sue you to get his police report. I got his police report today and it's inconsistent with this secondary autopsy that had been performed on my son. Your officer, David Norman-- he shot my son in the back. I don't understand how you allow him to still be on patrol. My son was the third victim of that police officer. Do you understand that chief? The third victim of that police officer!"
As tensions rose, Trevor Noah of Phoenix gave a moment of hope during the meeting when highlighting moments in Arizona history where change for the better did come.
"I believe that Phoenix can rise from the ashes with resilience and determination to create a community full of safety and inclusion. Over 20 years ago, we didn't have a Martin Luther King holiday, and we fought and won that. Over ten years ago, we fought SB 1070 and put out our sheriff," he said. "And now, the nation is watching the resilience and the determination that we can have again in the history of our city. It is up to us to turn the tide of history. And I believe that resistance affords the opportunity to ford the greatest impact in our history. And here in Phoenix, we will be the igniters for that change."