A North Carolina police officer is facing assault charges for hitting and tasering a man suspected of jaywalking.
Bodycam footage shows Senior Police Officer Christopher Hickman of the Ashevillle Police Department stopping Johnnie Jermaine Rush early in the morning last August. The two exchange words before Rush tries to flee the scene. Instead of pursuing on foot, Hickman jumps the gun and employs excessive use of force.
The audio from the footage supports the case for charges.
“(He) thinks it’s funny,” Hickman is heard saying as he chases Rush. “You know what’s funny is you’re gonna get fucked up hardcore.”
Two officers secure Rush and pin him to the ground before Hickman repeatedly punches him in the head, shoots him with a stun gun, and chokes him.
More of Hickman’s dialogue can be heard after.
“I beat the shit out of his head,” Hickman says. “Not gonna lie about that.”
Watch the footage below:
The FBI has launched an investigation into the incident and the ACLU released a statement on Twitter about it as well.
“Police must protect and serve everyone, regardless of race. Instead, a Black man gets beaten, tased, and choked over jaywalking. That’s right, jaywalking.”
The officer in question was nearly fired in January but opted to resign in disgrace before his superiors had the chance to do so. Clearly he saw the writing on the wall. He had violated his duty to protect and serve by utilizing unduly harsh, cruel and unusual punishment on one of the citizens he’s bound to by that duty. He deserves whatever comes next.