STONE COUNTY, Mo. - A video that accuses two Stone County deputies of police brutality is grabbing the attention of civil attorneys as well as thousands of online viewers. The two deputies seen in the video, Taylor Jenkins and Brandon Flack, have filed a defamation lawsuit against the three people they arrested.
According to their attorney, Dale Wiley, those three people, Jessica, Jordan and Donald White plan to sue the deputies as well. KSPR News asked Wiley for an interview earlier this week. He originally agreed but changed his mind because he says the family is filing the civil lawsuit.
“This all started with a traffic stop,” Stone County Sheriff Richard Hill said. On the night of May 5 around 11:35, a deputy pulled over a woman and a man with a warrant for his arrest. The driver of that car pulled into the end of the White family's driveway in Crane. “They slowly made their way up to the house where we were,” Levi Cook said in an interview posted on the website www.stonecountypolicebrutality.com. “When they got up there they were yelling vulgar language. They told Jordan to back up and Jordan says ‘I haven't moved’ then the cop violently took him down.”
Hill says it was the White family that cursed at officers. “They used foul language toward the deputies telling them to get off their property. He was in the middle of a traffic stop. He is going to complete his stop,” Hill said. “He tried to explain that to them but they kept coming out of the house to the point the deputies were outnumbered.”
According to a website registered to Wiley, when deputies arrested Jessica, Jordan and Donny White they did not have probable cause or a search warrant. “Why he (Donny White) was cuffed they were kicking his face in the pavement him,” Cook said. “There was a big pile of blood and they tazed him multiple times while he was handcuffed.”
The sheriff says the deputy did not deploy the two prongs of the Taser instead he applied what's called a "dry stun." Attorney Richard Crites is representing the deputies in a defamation civil lawsuit. During our interview, Crites offered to dry stun himself. “A dry stun is pain compliance,” Crites said. “It hurts.” After Crites “dry stunned” his own leg, he said “big deal.”
According to the White's attorney, "Donny White is subjected to a vicious prolonged Taser attack, despite being handcuffed and being face down on the ground. The deputy continues his sadistic torture ignoring Donny's cries begging the deputy to stop." In the online video a timer is seen on the bottom of the screen that appears to portray the length of the dry stun. “That clock wasn't attached to a Taser,” Crites said. “He presupposes that for that period of time that person is being dry stunned.”
According to the White's attorney, “Jessica White is smashed into the ground by a deputy where she tore her MCL as a result of the sheer brutality of the attack, after she tried to protect her father-in-law from being savagely assaulted by the deputies.”
“She reacted because she was drunk. Alcohol and stupidity go like bacon and eggs,” Crites said. “I don't care what Dale Wiley says you don't have an excuse to go up and hit somebody in the head that's a cop.”
According to the White family's attorney, Jordan white was kicked in the genitals by one of the deputies. Hill says if you look closely at the video you will see the officer stepped over the man which caused a shadow on the man's groin. The dark video will likely be played for judges in both civil and criminal courts.
No disciplinary action has been taken against the two deputies involved in the arrests. Jessica White is a member of the Crane Board of Aldermen and no action has been taken against her by the city either.
Hill says the incident is under investigation and he will ask an outside agency to take a look at the evidence. Wiley says he is working with civil attorneys to file a lawsuit on the family’s behalf. In a written statement sent late Wednesday, Wiley said his clients were not intoxicated. Wiley says the video was compiled and does not contain any missing pieces. Hill says the video was edited to use the “power of suggestion” to tell people what they would see next.To read the written statement from Wiley click on the PDF.