Sheriff Jim Hammond said at a Monday afternoon press conference that he has turned a video showing a veteran county detective kicking and punching a Chattanooga rapper over to District Attorney Neal Pinkston. The Pinkston office afterward said he has referred the matter to the U.S. Department of Justice.
Sheriff Hammond said the incident happened when a task force was making a felony arrest of Charles Deshon Toney, an aspiring rapper who goes by the name of Ace Boogie.
A neighbor took video showing him on the ground struggling with officers. Then he is hit and kicked by an officer identified as Detective Blake Kilpatrick. The video has gone viral. The sheriff said Detective Kilpatrick has been placed on "desk duty."
Sheriff Hammond, who stood with leaders of the NAACP at the Sheriff's Office, said his department was seeking to talk with Toney and any witnesses as well as obtain a copy of the video. He said he was advised that there was more of the video than was posted online.
He said the full context of the incident needed to be taken into consideration, including any other video views.
Sheriff Hammond said Toney denied transport to the hospital. He said he was checked out for injuries when he arrived at the jail.
Toney was charged with resisting arrest, assault and fabricating evidence.
Dr. Elenora Woods said she believed that Sheriff Hammond was on top of the investigation and had acted appropriately. She said she at the sheriff were seeking a fair and thorough investigation.
She said, "We need to get a solution very quickly."
County Commissioners Warren Mackey and Katherlyn Geter said they were dismayed by the video. Commissioner Mackey said, "I had many calls by people who were very concerned about the treatment he received." Commissioner Geter said, "It was very disturbing to say the least."
Sheriff Hammond said he had contacted Dr. Woods quickly "to get out in front of this situation."
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