Douglasville Police Chief Chris Womack had been hit with allegations of police brutality since arresting a suspect who led police on a dangerous high speed chase.
But on Tuesday, WAGA-TV obtained video which captures the moment Chief Womack took Morris Slaughter into custody.
The whole thing started when an off-duty officer stopped the suspect at a local mall to question him about some suspicious behavior. After finding marijuana in his possession the officer attempted to arrest him, but Slaughter broke free. A high-speed chase ensued. When it all came to an end, it’s the way that officers at the scene arrested him that has created all the controversy.
However, after watching the video, the suspect’s own attorney told the news station the footage shows no wrongdoing, only “proper police procedure.”
“Womack is seen in the video pulling Slaughter from his vehicle, pinning him to the ground, and holding his service weapon to the back of his head,” My Fox Atlanta reported.
Slaughter’s attorney, Mac Pilgrim also said about the video: “The gentleman was arrested, cuffed… Yes, it was an aggressive arrest…. but I don’t see anything criminal here.”
While Slaughter claimed after the arrest that he was beaten by the officers, Pilgrim disagrees: “My client kept his right arm under his body and another officer needed to strike him in order to detain him.”
The attorney said “It appears to be proper in the fact that he did not strike him in the head, he did not strike him in the face.” Pilgrim’s only concern was that the officers put innocent people’s lives in danger, while going on a high-speed chase during rush hour to catch a man suspected of committing two misdemeanors.
Four deputies involved in the arrest were previously cleared of excessive force claims. They were disciplined for continuing the car chase outside of county lines, the report said.
If Womack’s case goes to a grand jury the video footage will be key evidence involving the allegations against him. But most people who have watched it agree the video would be evidence in favor of the chief and his officers.
There has been overwhelming support on social media as well for Chief Womack, according to the local Fox affiliate.