Three Louisiana state troopers had been arrested and charged this month with easy battery after violently arresting a Black motorist two years in the past, The Associated Press reported Thursday.
In physique digicam footage obtained by the AP, the three troopers may be seen on high of Antonio Harris, the motorist, following a high-speed chase. Harris had surrendered to the officers, however they continued to slap, punch and knee him a number of occasions.
The troopers — Jacob Brown, Dakota DeMoss and George Harper — face misdemeanor prices within the incident after native prosecutors dropped felony charges of malfeasance in workplace. All three males are white.
Paperwork obtained by HuffPost present the three former troopers had been charged on Might 5.
Louisiana State Police didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark concerning the prices in opposition to the officers on Thursday.
Brown initially pulled Harris over for a minor site visitors violation on Might 23, 2020, and after a felony historical past examine, decided that his license was suspended and that he had excellent warrants. Harris then sped away, and state troopers pursued and ultimately arrested him.
An inner investigation discovered that the troopers had filed false studies concerning the arrest, falsely claiming that Harris had begun combating with them through the incident. Brown, one of many officers, additionally by no means knowledgeable prosecutors that physique digicam footage of the incident existed.
In textual content messages after the arrest, the troopers mocked Harris and stated was going to be “sore tomorrow.” Harris had sore ribs and spit up blood, in line with the AP.
Federal authorities are investigating Louisiana police extra broadly for utilizing racial slurs towards Black officers, ignoring or concealing proof of beatings, and side-stepping blame for officer misconduct.
A federal grand jury in Lafayette additionally heard testimony in Harris’ case. It’s unclear if the U.S. Division of Justice will pursue prices of civil rights violations in opposition to the troopers.
The lads who arrested Harris had a historical past of utilizing extreme power in opposition to civilians within the state. Brown was indicted in 2019 for beating a Black motorist 18 occasions with a flashlight.
In February 2021, state police arrested troopers from the identical division after they had been accused of utilizing extreme power, deactivating physique cameras and making false statements about two arrests from 2019 and 2020.
Native authorities have nonetheless not defined how Ronald Greene, a Black man, died in police custody. The incident concerned troopers from the identical unit, together with DeMoss.
The Related Press contributed to this report.