Charges Filed Against Asheville Cop Who Beat, Tased Man for Jaywalking


And I think it just brought forward a lot of the other underlying issues within the city of Asheville, in particular, how African-American residents of the city feel right now - that this incident happened because the police chief that's here now was brought in to bring in some reforms to this department.

The footage, obtained by the Citizen Times, shows Officer Chris Hickman beating local man Johnnie Jermaine Rush with several blows to the head while another officer held him down.

Officer Hickman was also charged with a second misdemeanor, for threatening Mr. Rush.

The public did not know the police chief quietly oversaw an internal investigation and was about to fire the officer when he quit in January.

The incident occurred last august when Rush was walking home from work last August when he was tasered and beaten up during a stop by the police. Video from a body camera worn by Hickman, who is white, shows Rush running away after Hickman's order to put his hands behind his back.

Rush told the Citizen-Times that Hickman used racial slurs against him as he was being treated for his wounds.

Senior Police Officer Christopher Hickman and an officer in training stopped Rush for suspected jaywalking. Hickman was charged with assault by strangulation, assault inflicting serious injury and communicating threats.

Hickman resigned his post in January.

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Rush says "I just want to go home, I'm exhausted man, I just finished work".

The officers end up catching Rush and as he is restrained on the ground, Hickman proceeds to punch him in the head several times, as well as shoots him with a stun gun and chokes him.

"All I ask of the community is don't judge the rest of those [cops] out there because of Chris Hickman", Lance said.

Blake characterizes Rush, the victim, as "an incredibly humble grateful man". Rush makes a run for it, however, and the officers chase him, eventually forcing him to the ground.

"The SBI director has discussed this with the district attorney and has declined to open a separate state investigation at this time given that the SBI is already assisting with a federal criminal investigation which will encompass most, if not all, of the issues set forth in the district attorney's request", Patty McQuillan, a spokesman for the state Bureau of Investigation said in a statement to ABC News.

Agents have since interviewed Rush as part of the preliminary investigation and will decide whether to launch a full investigation.

Asheville police boss Tammy Hooper said that she would leave on the off chance that it mitigated shock that has ejected over the video, however her offer comes after there has been trouble discovering somebody to explore the case.