Three former police officers say the death of Ronald Greene in 2019 after his arrest in which he was arrested, punched and dragged by Louisiana state troops is one of the worst crimes they have ever seen and the latest example of violence that destroys public confidence in law enforcement.
The video of Greene, 49, a black man from Monroe, Louisiana, carried by white soldiers, dragged his face first, strangled and left without medical help for about nine minutes for the first time this week in public, two years after his arrest. The Associated Press released camera footage of the May 10, 2019 arrest, which came after Greene led soldiers chasing at speeds in excess of 100 mph.
"It was a real tragedy," said David Thomas, a professor of intelligence at Florida Gulf Coast University who worked for 20 years as a traffic officer in Michigan and Florida. “Humanity was ignored. … As a Black person, I have never parted with what I know is a good police officer and what this job does to my community, ”said Thomas.
The AP on Friday released more details of Greene's arrest and details of his autopsy, which showed high levels of cocaine and alcohol in his system. Greene also suffered a torn aorta and a broken chest. The autopsy lists the cause of death as a "delirium caused by complex cocaine due to car crashes, physical fights, head injuries and self-control." It did not write a way to die.
Photo: This video from a video of a camera wearing a Louisiana Dakota DeMoss police body, shows soldiers holding Ronald Greene before paramedics arrived on May 10, 2019, outside Monroe, La.
This image from a video from a camera wearing the body of police in the state of Louisiana Dakota DeMoss, shows soldiers holding Ronald Greene before paramedics arrived on May 10, 2019, outside Monroe, La. Louisiana State Police with AP
An angry or cheerful delirium, a term often used to describe victims in police use cases, is not accepted as a reality by the American Medical Association and the American Psychiatric Association.
The paper said that "'excited delirium' (ExDs) has not been specified to properly describe and transmit information about a person."
Authorities in Louisiana on Friday night released nine videos of a car crash that led to the arrest, Greene's violent arrest and other incidents.
"I want the public to be closer to treatment," said Superintendent Lamar A. Davis of the Louisiana police at a press conference announcing the release of the planned evidence. "This has been a tragic event. Given Mr. Greene's family and all that they are going through, I don't want this to continue to arouse and exacerbate old wounds."
State police initially said military use by the military was justified - "bad but legal," as officials put it - and they did not open an administrative investigation until 474 days after Greene's death.
When asked if Greene was still alive, Davis on Friday said he could not comment on that because there were underlying circumstances, he was absent and he was not an expert.
The FBI has an ongoing criminal investigation into the arrests and is working with prosecutors and the Western District of Louisiana and the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice.
Greene, a barber, failed to stand up for unspecified traffic violations while driving an SUV on a rural highway south of the Arkansas border. The recently released video captures an unknown soldier that the man "ran a very red light" at the beginning of the chase.
High-speed chases often trigger police adrenaline rushing, which can lead to excessive enforcement, said Keith Taylor, who spent 23 years with the New York Police Department. But that is no excuse, he said.
“The most important job of the police is to save lives. That is the first thing they have to do, and that includes the people who are holding them, ”he said. "Just because a person has done something very wrong does not mean that it is an opportunity or an excuse to hurt them."
Taylor, a former third-generation black official with the NYPD, is fighting for a city council in Harlem and an associate professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice at City University of New York. Greene's arrest warrant proves that "we have a lot of work to do to improve the police response to difficult situations," said Taylor.
The video shows Greene's groaning, looking down at the ground for more than nine minutes, as soldiers use sanitizer wipes to wash blood off her hands and face. "I hope the boy does not have AIDS (insulting)," one of the soldiers was quoted as saying.
"I'm scared. I'm scared," Greene was heard shouting at the videos found by the AP.
Greene, bound in chains, tried to roll over, but was ordered to stay on her stomach.
Ronald Janota, a retired captain with Illinois State police, called Greene's arrest "shocking." Greene, Janota said, should not have been instructed in her stomach because that could lead to shortness of breath.
“It makes me sick,” she said. "I've never seen anything like it."
Janota, who testifies for the witnesses “and against the police,” said the video of Greene's arrest would create public confidence and damage state police in Louisiana.
Congress will not meet Biden's deadline for a bill to change Floyd's police force. Proponents of her case have been working to make the actual transcript of this statement available online.
"It destroys public confidence, and it will damage the police department itself," Janota said. "If they don't punish these things right away, they recommend unacceptable behavior."
At least six soldiers responded to the arrests, but not all turned on their body cameras. Troopers initially told Greene's family he died after hitting his SUV in a tree while chasing. State police admitted that Greene fought with soldiers and died on the way to hospital.
Master Trooper Chris Hollingsworth, who was involved in Greene's arrest, died in a car accident just hours after discovering he would be fired for his role in the case.
A video released by state police on Friday features what the Associated Press reported on Hollingsworth - that it was filmed with a body camera describing night violence.
New videos show him hitting the speaker in his police car after his arrest.
"Well this guy was drunk and I think he was wet," he said. "I beat this living f all the time to him. I strangled him and everything else to try to control him."
"We finally handcuffed him when the third arrived and the suspect's son was still fighting and we were still fighting him trying to catch him because he was spitting blood all over and suddenly he limped."
"Damn," said a voice on the other side.
"Yeah I thought he was dead," Hollingsworth said.
In some shots from his body camera video, a cross could be seen hanging from the rear view of his guard car.
Trooper Dakota DeMoss has been notified of the department's intention to cut him off, officials said on Friday. He remains on leave pending disciplinary proceedings related to "separation of intensive investigations," officials with state police said. Department officials also said prosecutor Kory York had worked for a 50-hour suspension.
Efforts to find DeMoss and York were unsuccessful on Friday night.
Davis, who became state police chief in October, said the soldiers involved in Greene's arrest deserved the proper procedure, but his department "put in place policies to ensure that this does not happen again."
He said he had installed a new military commander in Troop F, his soldiers were involved in Greene's arrest.
Greene's mother, Mona Hardin, said her son had no chance of survival.
“They killed him. It was planned, it was planned, ”Hardin said on Wednesday. “He didn't have a chance. Ronnie never had a chance. He wouldn't live to tell you about it. "
The Greek family's attorney, Lee Merritt, said the images "have the same characteristics as George Floyd's video, its length, and its brutality."