A bad cop is neither a black problem or a white problem. It’s a blue problem. Bad cops endanger the lives of good cops by stretching the divide between police and the community. All good cops have the responsibility of weeding out the bad apples if ‘Blue Lives Matter’ like they say. One police officer recruit in Tuskegee understood that when he ratted out the actions of Lt. Alex Huntley.
Huntley, 54, was convicted Friday for beating a handcuffed arrestee who throughout the ordeal remained compliant. U.S. Attorney Louis V. Franklin, FBI Special Agent in Charge James Jewell, and Acting Assistant Attorney General John Gore of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division brought the charges against the officer.
The prosecution introduced evidence of Huntley’s wrongdoing and heavy handed police tactics including an audio recording by an unnamed police recruit. According to the evidence Huntley arrested a man who tussled with police near the Tuskegee town square on December 2014. After arresting the man, Huntley directed another officer to transport the arrestee to lock up for booking.
According to WSFA:
Prosecutors say once Huntley returned to the police department, he pepper sprayed the unnamed arrestee in the face despite him being handcuffed and following officer instructions.
What happened next horrified a police officer recruit, who then secretly recorded audio on his cell phone of the arrestee being assaulted.
Huntley was found guilty of knocking the handcuffed suspect to the ground and kicking and punching him repeatedly for no apparent reason. During the unprovoked beatdown the disgraced lieutenant stood over the arrestee and yelled threats at him as he writhed on the ground in pain.
U.S. Attorney Franklin said, “The majority of our police officers are dedicated to protecting and serving the public with strength, courage, and valor. Unfortunately Mr. Huntley was not so dedicated. Police officers walk a tough, yet honorable line every day. This office is committed to prosecuting any law enforcement officer who abandons their oath to protect and serve and, instead, chooses to engage in criminal conduct that they are sworn to oppose.”
The Tuskegee cop is now facing up to 10 years in prison, plus fines, and three years of supervised release. His fate will be determined during the sentencing phase of the trial.
“Illegal conduct by officers who abuse their power and violate the civil rights of those in their custody will not be tolerated,” John Gore, Acting Assistant Attorney General, said. “The department will continue to vigorously enforce our nation’s laws and hold officers who break the law accountable.”