A Mexican cop gave a whole new meaning to taking candy – and cigarettes – from a child.
Spectators in the Mexican town of Villahermosa filmed inspector Juan Diego López making an example of a young boy selling candy on the street. The officer forced a sobbing Manuel Diaz Hernandez to throw all his candy on the street and then swiped the cigarettes the boy was selling for himself.
The 10-year old street vendor, who was crying throughout the entire ordeal, slumped to the ground when López left, held his head in his hands, started to rock back and forth as a man stooped over to help the boy picked up his dirty goods.
Children selling candy on the street is a common sight throughout much of Latin America, where it is generally tolerated by law enforcement officials as long at the young salespeople don’t become overbearing or harass tourists. Even then, local cops generally don’t do more than shoo away the pint-sized peddlers or give them the proverbial slap on the wrist.
That’s why López’s antics with the young Hernández have caused such an uproar in Mexico.
Hernández purportedly came to the capital city of the Gulf state of Tabasco to earn money during the summer to buy paper and pencils in advance of the upcoming school year. To sell his wares, Hernández had to travel from his town of San Juan Chamula in Chiapas state, which is between three and half to four hours away.
The viral vitriol that ensued once the video of Hernández’s harsh punishment was posted online led to López getting the boot from his job and a promise from Tabasco state governor Arturo Nuñez to give Hernández a scholarship to study, plus all the medical and psychological help he needed to get over the trauma.