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HomeWorld NewsMississippi trooper cleared in probe of chokehold video

Mississippi trooper cleared in probe of chokehold video

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JACKSON, Miss — The Mississippi Division of Public Security stated Friday that its inside investigation discovered no felony conduct by a white Freeway Patrol trooper who used bodily drive towards a handcuffed Black man throughout an arrest — a confrontation caught on video by family of the person being arrested.

An investigation began after the family’ video of the Aug. 5 incident went viral. The footage confirmed the trooper placing a handcuffed man right into a chokehold and wrestling him right into a grassy ditch in a rural space close to the south Mississippi metropolis of McComb.

The division and investigators from two of its divisions, the Mississippi Freeway Security Patrol and the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation, stated they accomplished all obligatory inquiries.

“A assessment of this incident by MBI brokers and command employees produced no proof of felony conduct by the trooper all through the encounter,” Lt. Col. Charles Haynes, director of the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation, stated in a information launch.

The Division of Public Security launched practically 40 minutes of video and audio. It included video shot by cameras within the trooper’s patrol automobile, audio captured by the trooper and video shot by brothers of the primary man arrested. Though among the patrol automobile footage was silent, the division stated it had synchronized the video and the audio clips.

A part of the footage exhibits Eugene Lewis standing within the street in handcuffs as his brother Gary, who additionally goes by the title “Packer” Lewis, and one other brother, Derrius Lewis, yelled that they had been recording the incident. Abruptly, the trooper grabbed Eugene Lewis by the neck and pulled him throughout the street, tackling him to the bottom. At one level, the trooper appeared to make use of his knee to pin him down.

Investigators recognized the trooper as Hayden Falvey. Within the mixed video and audio, Lewis may be heard telling Falvey, “I can’t breathe,” to which the trooper responded, “You’re working your mouth. You’ll be able to breathe.”

In response to the information launch, Falvey pulled over Lewis for dashing and different visitors violations. It additionally stated Falvey alleged he smelled burnt marijuana from the automobile, and Lewis’ eyes had been bloodshot and glassy.

In patrol automobile dashboard digicam footage and audio launched Friday, Falvey may be heard saying to Eugene Lewis: “Did you smoke some weed not too long ago?”

Lewis replied that he had carried out so about 40 or 50 minutes earlier.

“OK,” Falvey stated as he patted down Lewis. “Not a giant deal.”

Falvey put handcuffs on Lewis, saying it was a precaution as he searched Lewis’ SUV. The trooper stated Lewis was not beneath arrest at that time and requested Lewis a number of questions on whether or not he had ever been arrested and whether or not any marijuana or different medication had been within the automobile. Lewis stated he had beforehand been arrested for promoting cocaine.

Through the trooper’s automobile search, Gary and Derrius Lewis drove up in a Dodge Charger, stopped and acquired out of their automobile. They recognized themselves as Lewis’ brothers. After a quick alternate with Falvey, the brothers left. They quickly returned to shoot cellphone video because the trooper’s bodily altercation with Eugene Lewis began.

After Falvey put Eugene Lewis into the patrol automobile and buckled his seatbelt, Lewis used obscenities towards the trooper.

“I’m glad you’re feeling that approach, sir,” Falvey responded.

Video shot by considered one of Eugene Lewis’ brothers confirmed one other state trooper arriving. It additionally confirmed one of many troopers strolling towards the 2 brothers and pointing a weapon at considered one of them.

Troopers arrested Eugene Lewis’ two brothers. Within the audio launched Friday, Falvey may be heard telling the lads they need to not have stopped to shoot video.

“Your brother goes to jail,” Falvey stated. “Now all of y’all are catching fees to your theatrics.”

Packer Lewis stated his brothers had been launched from jail that evening, however he was saved two extra days due to a previous cost on his felony document. He stated he’s going through 9 fees associated to the incident, together with obstruction of justice. Eugene Lewis can also be going through eight fees and Derrius Lewis is going through 5 fees.

Tindell defended the troopers’ choice to arrest the brothers who shot video of the incident.

“Whereas DPS and MHSP acknowledge and respect the appropriate of residents to look at, and even document, legislation enforcement officers executing their duties, these rights will not be with out limitations,” Tindell stated within the information launch. “As you will note, this occasion is a primary instance of how even a routine visitors cease can shortly flip right into a harmful scenario for each residents and legislation enforcement officers when topics resist arrest and when uninvolved individuals intervene.”



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