The video shows 37 year old Adam Tatum pleading with officers before being beaten repeatedly with a police baton.
Tatum suffered two broken legs. Now he is suing the city for 50 Million dollars.
It's an incident that cost officers Sean Emmer and Adam Cooley their jobs.
Before police arrived, the video showed Tatum brandishing a knife toward another inmate. But Police Chief Bobby Dodd admitted that some officers used excessive force.
"There comes a point where you have to look at it and say, is this reasoanble? Is this excessive? Was it abusive? And there's a point that it gets to that point. One of the officers struck Mr. Tatum. I counted over 48 strikes and to me in my opinion that's excessive, and it was abusive."
A federal investigation to whether Tatum's civil right's were violated is still on going.
Here is a statement released today by attorney's on behalf of Officer Sean Emmer:
Adam Tatum is a convicted, violent felon who was serving the remainder of his sentence at a half-way house. On this night, he was admittedly high on crack cocaine and armed with a deadly weapon.
After refusing a drug test, Tatum began terrorizing the employees and another inmate. In fear for their lives, the employees locked themselves in a control room while Tatum held an inmate at knifepoint and kicked the control room door. The employees called 911. When the officers arrived, Tatum tried to escape into a weight room where there were other inmates. He reportedly said “[expletive] ya’ll” and “take me to jail.”
Chattanooga officers are trained to never assume that a suspect has only 1 weapon. This City has seen officers killed in the line of duty after deescalating force only to learn that the criminal has a second weapon. Here, Tatum turned on these officers with a knife and attacked. He repeatedly ignored the lawful orders to “stop resisting” and “put your hands behind your back.” The officers can be heard on this video commanding him to stop more than 80 times.
The City’s internal investigation states that these “officers followed the Use of Force Continuum as best as possible.” A Hamilton County grand jury failed to indict and found no evidence to bring charges. There are no criminal charges facing these officers, nor should there be.
As a result of Tatum’s actions against Officer Emmer and other officers, Tatum pled guilty to 4 counts of assault and is serving time in Silverdale. These Chattanooga Police Officers were only present because of Tatum’s decision to get high on crack and assault innocent people.
Stevie Phillips and Bryan Hoss, Davis & Hoss, P.C.