Sheriff Hammond objects to release of arrest video this morning
Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Hammond issued this statement Tuesday afternoon about the arrest of Reginald Arrington, Jr.
“Earlier this morning, Hamilton County District Attorney General Neil Pinkston released a video involving my deputies and Reginald Arrington, Jr., The video depicts my deputies’ actions in response to Arrington’s resisting arrest. By releasing this video, along with dismissing Arrington’s charges, General Pinkston essentially removed my deputies’ ability to offer direct testimony under oath pertaining to their actions and their training utilized in this incident.
By hastily dismissing charges and releasing this video without allowing a legal, preliminary probable cause hearing to take place, I feel General Pinkston’s actions will improperly influence and sensationalize the events of this incident to the public without allowing the legal process to effectively take place. Effectively, what General Pinkston has chosen to do is indict my deputies in the court of public opinion prior to facts being presented in a court of law.
Many of our citizens will view this video of Arrington’s resisting lawful arrest and may share concerns over how my deputies responded. Upon arrest, Arrington became combative at which time my deputies utilized compliance techniques, including the use of batons to eventually gain compliance. I ask our community to not rush to judgment based on the contents of the video, but allow for the investigation to take place at which time the actions of both my deputies and those of Arrington will be thoroughly reviewed. The dash cam video in question was taken internally by our personnel at the scene.
Based upon preliminary review of the video, I am not placing any of the deputies involved in this incident on administrative leave. However, to ensure this event is thoroughly reviewed, I have ordered an Administrative Review to be conducted to ensure Arrington’s treatment was justified and our policies and procedures were followed.
We are a nation of law and order and in order to remain so, it is imperative we allow and encourage the legal process to take place. This includes allowing for preliminary probable cause hearings to take place so all sides can be heard. As always, we welcome an outside review and will cooperate and offer any evidence necessary to seek a legal and appropriate resolution.
As sheriff, it has always been my intention that this agency stand firm and remain transparent even in the harshest light of public scrutiny. However, I cannot sit back and remain idle while my deputies have their right to be heard infringed upon.”
– Jim Hammond, Sheriff
The HCSO Deputies involved in this incident are as follows:
- Sergeant Mickey Rountree
- Corporal Brian Killingsworth
- Deputy Nick Dewy
- Deputy Todd Cook
- Deputy Charlene Choate
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