Tag Archives: Cumberland County

Five Deputies Disciplined After Video Reveals Inaction During Assault at Trump Rally

Five North Carolina sheriff’s deputies have been disciplined after video footage of their conduct at a Donald Trump campaign rally showed that they ignored one of the attendees who punched a protester they were escorting out of the rally.

John Franklin McGraw, 78, was arrested on March 10 and charged with assault and disorderly conduct after he punched Rakeem Jones, 26, in the face while Jones was being escorted out of a Trump rally on March 9.

While video footage of McGraw’s actions showed his assault on Jones, it also showed that the deputies escorting Jones out of the event did nothing to reprimand McGraw at the time.

Jones told NBC affiliate WRAL that he thought he was being arrested after he was punched, and he was surprised to see that McGraw returned to his seat.

“I thought I was being arrested, to be honest,” Jones said. “I saw, later on, that [McGraw] went back to his seat so I am trying to figure out why was he able to go back to his seat.

After the end of the rally, McGraw told Inside Edition that his favorite part of the rally was “knocking the hell out of that big mouth.”

“Yes, he deserved it,” McGraw said. “The next time we see him, we might have to kill him. We don’t know who he is. He might be with a terrorist organization.”

Sheriff Earl Butler of Cumberland County, North Carolina, released a statement on Facebook confirming that two deputies were suspended for a period of three days, and three deputies were suspended for a period of five days and demoted in rank, following a Donald Trump rally at the Crown Coliseum in Fayetteville on March 9.

[pull_quote_center]Three deputies were demoted in rank, and they were suspended for a period of five days each without pay for unsatisfactory performance and failing to discharge the duties and policies of the Office of Sheriff. Two other deputies were suspended for a period of three days without pay for unsatisfactory performance and the failure to discharge their duties.[/pull_quote_center]

Butler wrote that in the past, the deputies “have been vigilant, and have shown great bravery and fortitude,” including in July 2014, when some of the deputies in question encountered Andrew Michaelis, “who was on a deadly shooting spree, killing his father-in-law and nephew and assaulting deputies with an assault rifle in Cumberland County.”

[pull_quote_center]I have taken into account the past bravery and exemplary conduct, including the life-saving and other actions of these deputies in assessing the discipline, and in imposing the sanctions. We regret that any of the circumstances at the Trump rally occurred, and we regret that we have had to investigate all of these matters. Yet, it is our duty and responsibility to do justice, and to carefully examine not only the actions of others, but our own actions to ensure that the law and our policies are justly and fairly enforced based in principle and without other influences.[/pull_quote_center]

During an interview with Chuck Todd on Meet The Press on Sunday, Trump said he does not condone violence. When asked if he would consider paying McGraw’s legal fees, he said, “I’ve actually instructed my people to look into it, yes.”

When asked a similar question by George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s Good Morning America on Tuesday, Trump said, “I didn’t say I would pay for his fees.”

“Nobody has asked me for fees and I haven’t even seen it so I never said I was going to pay for fees,” Trump insisted.

During a rally in Iowa in February, Trump said, “If you see somebody getting ready to throw a tomato, knock the crap out of them, would you? Seriously. I will pay for the legal fees. I promise, I promise. They won’t be so much because the courts agree with us too.”

For more election coverage, click here.

Follow Rachel Blevins on Facebook and Twitter.

Dashboard camera video shows New Jersey man shot by officers

New video footage has been released showing the fatal shooting of a New Jersey man by police officers during a traffic stop.

The video comes from the dashboard camera of officers Braheme Days and Roger Worley. In the video, we see the officers begin a routine traffic stop on a Jaguar, but then, orders are ignored, guns are drawn, and shots are fired, and the result is the death of one man.

Jerame Reid, 36, was in the passenger seat of the vehicle which was driven by Leroy Tutt at the time of the traffic stop. At first, the officers approach the vehicle and inform both people in the car they were being pulled over for failing to stop at a stop sign.

After informing the vehicle why they were being stopped, Days pulls his weapon out and tells the occupants, “Show me your hands.” According to CBS News, Days informs Worley of a gun in the vehicle’s glove box, and Days appears to reach in the vehicle and remove the weapon.

Both officers are seen with their weapons still raised, and Tutt places both of his empty hands out the window. Days continues to shout at Reid not to move and warning him, “I’m going to shoot you.” Reid then reportedly says, “I’m getting out and getting on the ground.”

Once the passenger side door opens, Reid steps out and his hands appear to be empty, and both officers fire at least six shots, killing Reid.

The officers then tell Tutt to get out of  the car,which he does, and the officers proceed to handcuff and take him into custody.

Several witnesses at this time can be heard shouting at the officers and other squad cars begin to pull up to the scene. One witness, Tahli Dawkins, told NBC Philadelphia, “He had nothing in his hands… He had his hands up trying to get out of the car, one on the door was getting out like this and he just started shooting him.”

The video speaks for itself that at no point was Jerame Reid a threat and he possessed no weapon on his person,” Walter Hudson, chairman and founder of the civil rights group the National Awareness Alliance, said, according to the AP. “He complied with the officer and the officer shot him.”

A firearm was recovered from the scene, according to the Cumberland County Prosecutor’s Office, but because this is an ongoing investigation, they refused to comment further.

Both officers are on paid administrative leave while the investigation takes place.

The video can be seen here.