Clarke County, GA — A Georgia police officer, who was fired from the division after physique digital camera footage confirmed him pursue after which run a person down along with his police cruiser, has simply been cleared of any felony wrongdoing. The chase occurred in June and following outrage from the group the officer was faraway from the pressure. Nonetheless, new outrage is probably going following this ruling by prosecutors.
On Friday, prosecutors introduced that whereas utilizing his cruiser to mow down a fleeing unarmed man Saulters broke no legislation.
Based on investigators, Officer Taylor Saulters with the Athens-Clarke County Police Division was trying to serve a warrant for a probation violation to Timmy Patmon. When Saulters and his associate arrived, Patmon fled the scene.
A chase ensued as Saulters pursued Patmon on foot after which acquired into his patrol automotive. Patmon continued working as Saulters chased him down within the cruiser.
The chase shortly got here to an finish, nevertheless, as Saulters is seen turning the automotive towards Patmon earlier than he goes flying over the windshield.
Patmon’s mom, Tammy Brown-Patmon watched all the incident unfold and feared the worst after watching Patmon go flying over the cruiser.
“I assumed he was lifeless. I assumed my son was lifeless,” she mentioned. “It’s police brutality. It’s improper.”
Displaying how swiftly police inside investigations can happen, after Saulters arrested Patmon, he was instantly positioned on depart following an outcry from the group and those that witnessed the madness unfold.
Solely hours later, Saulters had been fired for failing to observe division coverage—which apparently includes not working unarmed suspects over together with your police cruiser.
Regardless that they fired Saulters, the division initially acknowledged that they consider he didn’t deliberately run over Patmon.
“The Inside Affairs assessment discovered that he had used extreme pressure on this particular case as a result of it isn’t in our protocol to strike people on this method,” Chief Scott Freeman mentioned.
“The officer was very adamant that it wasn’t his intention to strike Mr. Patmon,” Freeman mentioned.
After additional investigation, nevertheless, the chief mentioned, “The officer accelerates the automobile, there may be some wheel motion the place it seems that steering wheel is being turned to strike Patmon.”
As WSB reports, Brown-Patmon says her son mustn’t have run from the officers however contends the officer’s actions have been additionally improper. She mentioned she was grateful the officer was fired on the time.
“I perceive no matter he did was improper, however they didn’t need to run over him,” Brown-Patmon mentioned. “I’m relieved that he was fired. Justice was served.”
After he was run over, Patmon was dropped at the hospital to be handled. His mom says he suffered a damaged arm and now limps when he walks. Police say Patmon solely sustained scrapes and bruises through the incident.
As for Saulters, he’s nonetheless claiming he did nothing improper.
I’m nonetheless in shock just a little bit. I really feel like there’s been a heavy burden lifted off of me and my household’s shoulders,” Saulters mentioned.
“You continue to stand by your actions that day?” Channel 2’s Michael Seiden asked.
“Oh, I do 100 %. I really feel I did nothing improper,” Saulters mentioned.
Beneath is the complete size video.
Patmon is the second man TFTP has reported on in Georgia—in a year—who has been run over by police. Warren Hill was strolling via the car parking zone of Mall West Finish final September when he immediately discovered himself being run down by a police cruiser. An Atlanta police officer is now off the job after he was accused of working Hill over after mistaking him for a suspect.
“It damage unhealthy,” Hill advised WSB-TV. “My head, my neck, my again, my complete physique. You get hit by a automotive, what do you assume goes to occur?”
Based on Hill, the officer mistook him for a home violence suspect. Hill, who was afraid of the police, determined to try to get away from the officer. Nonetheless, the officer apparently took the truth that Hill tried to keep away from him as a menace or request for forgiveness and determined to run over the person.
“I used to be attempting to get away from the cops and I used to be afraid of the cops, so I ran. So that they thought I used to be the suspect and ran me down like a canine or an animal,” he mentioned.
Whereas Patmon had a warrant out for his arrest, as Hill’s case illustrates, even being harmless is not any safety that police gained’t run you over.