Arrest altercation between man, GSP draws social media ire
BLAKELY, Ga. (WALB) - A traffic stop that turned into an arrest altercation between the man charged and a Georgia State Patrol (GSP) trooper is drawing fire on social media.
The incident happened on Dec. 14.
The GSP trooper pulled over a man, later identified as Zachary Williams, on Court Square for failing to maintain a lane, according to an incident report from GSP.
Once pulled over, the trooper, in the incident report, said “the driver become uncooperative and confrontational.”
The trooper also said that Williams “refused simple verbal commands.” In a video that was given to WALB News 10, Williams told the trooper that he wanted to speak to the trooper’s supervisor and wanted more officers to respond before he cooperated.
The trooper then tried to arrest Williams. The trooper attempted to open Williams’ door but he shut the door and then the trooper used force to open the door, according to the incident report.
The trooper used his baton and loud verbal commands to try and get Williams out of the vehicle. The incident report states Williams tried to take the baton and the trooper punched him to try and stun him. After this, the incident report states Williams grabbed the trooper’s wrist and forearm and pulled him into the vehicle. The trooper hit him again with his fist.
The altercation continued before the trooper took out his taser. The incident reports Williams reached toward the taser to try and disarm the trooper. The trooper gave loud verbal commands for Williams to get on the ground.
Williams was arrested when a Blakely police officer arrived. He was charged with obstruction of a law enforcement officer and removal or attempted removal of a weapon from a public official.
Here is a copy of the incident report:
The altercation making rounds on social media:
WALB News 10 was given copies of video showing the altercation before and after when the trooper pulled out the taser.
This video shows the beginning of the altercation:
This video shows what happened right before the trooper pulled out his taser and what happened after that:
WALB News 10 reached out to the Georgia State Patrol. The agency provided the following statement about the incident.
“At the beginning of the stop, the trooper gave the driver a lawful command to produce his driver’s license, which the driver refused to do. The trooper then informed the driver he was under arrest for refusing to comply with his lawful commands and told him to exit the vehicle, which the driver refused to do,” GSP said in a statement.
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