Monday, July 11, 2011
Man Kicked, Beaten Tased While In Handcuffs
A Tennessee man sustained a punctured lung and cracked ribs following a brutal beating from a team of police deputies - while he was already in handcuffs.
After being stripped naked, the man was kicked and shocked repeatedly with a Taser gun. The January 23 incident was caught on tape by video equipment fixed to the vehicle of a Humphreys county sheriff deputy.
The victim, Darren T. Ring, 34, of New Johnsonville is requesting to be released from jail where he has been held in lieu of bond for more than five months.
Humpreys County deputies descended on Ring after responding to a report of gunshots in Waverly.
Ring was not arrested for firing the shots but was drunk when the deputies arrived, reports show.
In a grand jury indictment, Ring was charged with three counts of assaulting an officer, resisting arrest, and a parole violation.
However, the video footage shows deputies repeatedly telling Ring to stop resisting arrest while he is incapacitated laying facedown in the snow with at least two deputies on top of him.
Contradictory to events that were caught on the hidden camera, Deputy James McCord wrote in his incident report that Ring kicked him in the testicles, poked him in the eye and tried to grab a fellow deputy’s firearm.
'He (Ring) was extremely violent towards all the deputies trying to restrain him,' the incident report states.
He was continuously kicking and spitting on the deputies.
However, the video shows a half-naked Ring being held down and intermittently kicked and struck with a baton for approximately 10 minutes.
To add insult to injury, later in the video a Waverly police department officer arrives on the scene and proceeds to repeatedly taser an immobilized Ring, while the deputies tell him to roll over onto his stomach.
In the video Ring says he can’t roll over. His attorney, Public Defender Jake Lockert, said his client was unable to move because of repeated Taser shots.
The defendant had committed no crime,' the motion states, 'was not advised that he was being arrested for any crime, and was not charged with any crime until after the officers had beaten him and had to charge the defendant in an attempt to justify or cover up their own criminal conduct of aggravated assault on the defendant.'
Ring has also hired prominent Nashville attorney David Raybin for a possible civil suit. Raybin said his client may pursue civil action once the criminal charges against Ring are resolved.
'I'm not going to speculate why the deputies acted this way,' said Raybin.
'Never in my 35 years have I seen anything like it, especially when you consider how long Mr. Ring was kicked, beaten with a baton and tasered.'
In his motion, Lockert asked that Ring be released from Humphreys County jail and requested “that all charges should be dropped because the defendant committed no crime and, even if he had committed some crime, he was punished so severely that jeopardy should attach and bar further prosecution.
Ring has had previous arrests including a recent driving under influence charge.
A spokeswoman for the sheriff’s office said the officers in question have not been suspended, but further details could not be released because of the investigation.