WARNING: DISTRESSING VIDEOS BELOW
Clayton County Sheriff’s Deputy Fired
And yet another video emerges showing an officer using excessive force against a Black man. The latest incident happened on Saturday in Jonesboro, Georgia. Roderick Walker, his girlfriend and their two children had returned a rental vehicle. He either called for a Lyft driver or offered a stranger $10 to take them home, (I’ve read about both scenarios). What is known is that the car was not his and he was not driving the vehicle. A sheriff’s office vehicle pulled over the car for a broken tail light. One of the deputies asked Mr. Walker for his identification and Walker asked why he wanted it since he wasn’t driving. The deputy got upset and told Mr. Walker to get out of the car. Mr. Walker again questions why and the deputies proceed to forcibly remove Mr. Walker from the vehicle.
The two deputies then piled on top of Mr. Walker. The first deputy is fully on Mr. Walker’s chest, the second deputy lies on top of the first, adding his weight. This is very dangerous. These two officers have now restricted Mr. Walker’s ability to expand his chest, inhibiting his ability to breathe. Guess what happens when a person can’t breathe? They struggle. This is a no-brainer. That a person’s struggle to breathe so they don’t die, is deemed a crime, is something our society needs to fix. But trying to asphysiate him apparently wasn’t enough. The top deputy begins to punch Mr. Walker in the face and about his head.
Then the officer has the gall to claim that Mr. Walker bit him. Think of that. Mr. Walker would have had to be waiting with his mouth open, hoping that one of the blows would land in his mouth. Then he would have to be cognizant to think beyond the stunning impact of a blow to the face, to bite down. As you can see from the videos, these were quick blows. The officer did not punch him in the mouth then leave his fist there for Mr. Walker to bite. No, more than likely, this was what is known as a ‘fight bite’. That’s something that happens when you hit someone in the mouth with your fist so hard that you cut yourself on their teeth. It is NOT an intentional bite by the person who is being beaten.
Mr. Walker was charged with “suspicion of obstructing officers and battery.” In other words, he is being penalized for knowing his rights and for struggling to breathe. This is very common. Officers have their go-to charges that they use to try to justify their actions. Remember, if they had never overstepped what the law allows them to do, these actions would not have happened. The reality is, Mr. Walker did have warrants out for his arrest. But that does not give the officers the right to act in an illegal manner. You can’t just ignore people’s civil rights because you feel it inconveniences you.
The deputy has been fired and is under criminal investigation for excessive force, but unsurprisingly, the Sheriff’s Office is protecting his identity. However, they immediately released Mr. Walker’s information. This is another common tactic by law enforcement agencies, a subtle attempt to discredit the victim. I would like to know what kind of disciplinary history this deputy has, but that information is commonly withheld from the public.
There are two videos below. The first is the one taken by Mr. Walker’s girlfriend. The second is one taken by a bystander.