(WMC-TV) – Neighbors and colleagues of a Memphis police officer accused of threatening three teenagers with a gun say their friend is being falsely accused.
Memphis police officer Margaret Taylor is the latest on a string of officers accused of breaking the law.
Friends and colleagues say there is another side to the story and that Taylor is being wrongfully caught up in a political effort to shame the police department.
Taylor was off of the clock and at home on Saturday when three teenagers accused her of chasing them, slapping one of them, and showing them her gun.
"She said if you come back on her street she was going to kill us," said Kelvin Hall.
Since Taylor's arrest and aggravated assault charge, friends and colleagues have been crying foul.
"I was appalled at what they told me happened in terms of the incident because I knew she was not that kind of person," said Shani Sanyika, who is Taylor's neighbor.
Dozens of phone calls and emails came in to the Action News 5 newsroom from Taylor's neighbors who say she is wrongfully accused.
Neighbors say the teens will come to their homes after dark asking if they can mow or rake their lawns, even though they do not have a lawnmower or rake with them. They say the teens get angry and offensive when turned away. They demand money, or water, and lounge on porches uninvited.
Police Association President Michael Williams says Officer Taylor is one of the nicest people you would even meet.
"Real quiet, kind of meek, she is just down or in the process of recovering from a serious illness," said Michael Williams.
Williams suggests Taylor is a victim of overzealous city administration on a mission to expose officers accused of breaking the law.