Ex-Coast deputy sentenced in domestic violence case. He won’t serve time or have a record.

·4 min read

Former Hancock County sheriff’s deputy Colin Freeman pleaded no contest Tuesday to a misdemeanor charge of domestic violence for assaulting his ex-girlfriend, identified in an incident report as another sheriff’s employee.

The 38-year-old former K-9 handler, narcotics officer and patrol deputy entered the plea before Justice Court Judge Brian Necaise.

Freeman’s wife and his attorney, William “Bill” Covington, accompanied him to the court hearing in Hancock County Justice Court.

By entering a no-contest plea, Freeman is not admitting guilt but agrees to the basic facts of the case and that there is enough evidence to convict him.

After entering the plea, Judge Necaise sentenced Freeman to six months probation, during which the ex-deputy would have to take random drug tests, which is standard protocol for someone on probation.

In addition, the judge fined Freeman $250, ordered him to pay court costs, and attend and complete an 18-week domestic violence intervention program.

Upon completing his sentence, prosecutor Olen Anderson said the conviction would be non-adjudicated, meaning Freeman will not have a record for a misdemeanor conviction.

“This was an unfortunate incident, and all parties agreed that this was the best way to resolve what was a regrettable set of circumstances for everybody,” Covington said.

The Sun Herald asked Freeman if he wished to comment, but he referred all questions to his attorney.

Freeman’s attorney said the former deputy has no plans to return to a career in law enforcement.

Former police officer Colin Freeman walks into court for his misdemeanor domestic violence trial at the Hancock County Public Safety Complex in Bay St. Louis on Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021.
Former police officer Colin Freeman walks into court for his misdemeanor domestic violence trial at the Hancock County Public Safety Complex in Bay St. Louis on Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021.

Deputy’s resignation followed Sun Herald inquiries

Hancock County sheriff’s deputies arrested Freeman on the domestic violence charge on Aug. 8 after responding to a 911 call at the home he shared at the time with the victim, identified as a now-former girlfriend.

Freeman had been placed on administrative leave without pay after the arrest, Hancock County Sheriff Ricky Adam said, but he was still receiving income from accrued time off he had built up.

When the Sun Herald started asking questions about the arrest that had gone unreported, Freeman resigned from the Sheriff’s Department.

The incident report obtained by the Sun Herald included a notation that said: “not for public release.” The Sun Herald received the report in October after much back and forth between Justice Court officials and the Sheriff’s Office.

Former police officer Colin Freeman walks into court for his misdemeanor domestic violence trial at the Hancock County Public Safety Complex in Bay St. Louis on Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021.
Former police officer Colin Freeman walks into court for his misdemeanor domestic violence trial at the Hancock County Public Safety Complex in Bay St. Louis on Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021.
Hancock County Deputy Colin Freeman
Hancock County Deputy Colin Freeman

Kicking in a bathroom door

Freeman was drunk and angry at his ex-girlfriend at the time of the assault because he thought she was cheating on him, the report says.

The victim told authorities Freeman was drunk when he kicked in a bathroom door while she was bathing her two young children, then ages 3 and 4, at the home they shared at the time in the Perkiniston community.

The couple had just returned from a birthday party for one of the victim’s children.

While they were at the party, Freeman saw a text message the victim had sent to a man saying she loved him. Freeman got angry because he thought it was proof she was cheating on him.

The woman told Freeman she had sent the message to a good friend, and she often told the man she loved him, but she was not cheating on Freeman.

Freeman batted a phone out of the victim’s hand while she was attempting to call 911 for help after kicking in the door, according to the report.

After that, the woman said Freeman “shoved her backward in what she believed was an attempt to shove her into the bathtub.”

As a result, the victim said she fell backward and hit the corner of a countertop, injuring the lower right side of her back.

During the entire encounter, Freeman repeatedly told the victim to pack up her stuff and get out of the house that he owned.

He also threw out her belongings that were in a pickup truck he had bought her, the report says.

When Freeman went outside, the woman managed to dial 911 and was on the phone with dispatchers when she saw Freeman heading back inside and locked herself in a bathroom.

Freeman forced his way into the bedroom, but when he realized she had gotten through to 911 dispatchers, he left home.

K-9 Deputy Loco pictured with his handler Deputy Colin Freeman.
K-9 Deputy Loco pictured with his handler Deputy Colin Freeman.

Wrestling with suspect to handcuff him

Sheriff Ricky Adam said after the information on the arrest was released that he thought Freeman was a “good guy” but said the Sheriff’s Department doesn’t put up with that type of behavior.

“If they are going to do stuff like that, they are not going to work for us,” Adam said after the Sun Herald obtained the information to report on the case. “They are going to be terminated or resign or whatever.”

When deputies arrested Freeman later that night, he resisted their efforts, with one of the arresting officers even pulling out a Taser in case he needed to use it to get Freeman under control.

In the end, it took three deputies to wrestle Freeman to the ground to get him into handcuffs.

Freeman was booked at the Hancock County jail at 10:30 p.m. on Aug. 8 and immediately released on a $500 signature bond.

Colin Freeman’s attorney William Covington, left, walks into court at the Hancock County Public Safety Complex in Bay St. Louis on Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021.
Colin Freeman’s attorney William Covington, left, walks into court at the Hancock County Public Safety Complex in Bay St. Louis on Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021.
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