Leaked footage of a police officer repeatedly punching a pedestrian led to charges for Christopher Hickman, the Asheville, NC cop who also lost his job after the attack on August 24 last year. Hickman claimed that Johnnie Jermaine Rush was jaywalking and had assaulted him when challenged, but bodycam video showed a more sinister incident in which Hickman, who is white, told his black victim "you are going to get fucked up hard core", chokes him, repeatedly strikes his head with his fist, then tases him.
"I beat the shit out of his head," Hickman says on the recording. "Not gonna lie about that."
The police chief, Tammy Hooper, has also offered to resign.
Police said they plan to present an investigation into whether Hickman’s actions against Rush were criminal to the district attorney next week.
“This is a human rights issue, and Hickman should’ve been charged from day one,” local Black Lives Matter leader DeLores Venable said during Wednesday’s meeting, per the Citizen-Times report. “If no one would’ve leaked it or said something, we would be in the dark.”
Hooper issued a public apology March 1, saying, “The acts demonstrated in this video are unacceptable and contrary to the department’s vision and the progress we have made in the last several years in improving community trust.”
Jaywalking is a ridiculous crime to begin with, but "jaywalking" in the dead of night on an empty road in Asheville? No wonder people were curious about the circumstances of the arrest, and no wonder the footage had to be leaked before the public saw it. Hickman was just prowling around looking for a donkey to pin.
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