Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Sgt. Eric M. Huxley has been hit with several felony charges and suspended after body camera video showed him kicking a handcuffed Black man in the face during an arrest in downtown Indianapolis last month.
Huxley is facing charges of misconduct and battery with moderate bodily injury after he was seen kicking 38-year-old Jermaine Vaughn in the face on Monument Circle on Sept. 24. Both offenses are level-six felonies, WTHR reported.
Police released the footage on Tuesday, Oct. 12, which shows the encounter between Huxley and Vaughn.
In the clip, an officer is heard asking Vaughn to lean back repeatedly as his hands are cuffed behind his back. When Vaughn asks, “how the f–k am I gonna lean back,” officer Matthew Shores then pushes him up the steps on Monument Circle and pushes him to the ground.
Soon after, Huxley comes up and stomps Vaughn in the face. “Stop. You’re done. You’re done. You’re done,” an officer is heard saying.
Huxley claims, “I accidentally kicked him in his face. I was attempting to put my foot on his shoulder, and I accidentally kicked him in his face,” according to the probable cause affidavit obtained by the outlet.
Documents also highlighted the blood seen coming from Vaughn’s mouth after he was kicked from a laceration to his lower lip. He was charged with resisting law enforcement and “disorderly conduct – unreasonable noise” in relation to the September arrest, but those charges have since been dropped.
The department revealed earlier this week that a federal investigation had been launched into the incident. “The United States Attorney’s Office is aware of the incident involving an IMPD officer and Jermaine Vaughn,” Acting U.S. Attorney John E. Childress said on Wednesday, Oct. 13, during a press conference.
He added, “Our office and the FBI have opened an investigation, and if the investigation reveals prosecutable violations of any federal criminal statutes, the Department will take appropriate action.”
The sergeant’s actions do not represent @IMPDnews values or community expectations of its police department. My thoughts are with the victim and the officers who do what’s right every day. @IMPD_Chief did the right thing and took swift and certain action. pic.twitter.com/t04eYeTaSP
— Assistant Chief Chris Bailey (@irishsarge) October 12, 2021
The other two officers involved, Shores and Sgt. Christopher Kibbey, both 23- and 21-year veterans respectively, were placed on administrative duty pending the conclusion of the investigation. IMPD Chief Randal Taylor told reporters that the force history of all officers will be examined although he doesn’t believe Shores and Kibbey will face any criminal charges.
Cheif Taylor described Huxley’s actions as “something outrageous” and believes he should be fired. “My hope is that the community understands that when these things come to our attention, we’ll deal with them quickly, get those people off the force,” he said. “Please don’t hold that against our men and women that are doing a great job for you day in and day out.”
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