An off-duty Atlanta officer who was moonlighting as a Walmart security guard was reportedly recorded battering a customer over a stolen tomato.
WSB-TV reported Thursday that a jury is deliberating whether Trevor King exercised exessive force during the taped October 2014 incident. According to WGCL, U.S. Attorneys claimed that King’s repeated baton strikes left Tyrone Carnegay with a broken leg.
Prosecutors also said that King erroneously accused Carnegay of shoplifting. Charges were filed against the officer in 2016, after Carnegay filed a civil lawsuit of his own.
“He got whacked seven or eight times across the shin and actually broke both bones, both the fibula and the tibula,” Carnegay’s lawyer, Craig Jones, told the New York Daily News.
Jones said that Carnegay had reweighed the tomato after purchasing it. Carnegay was allegedly in the customer service line to get a refund but decided against it and attempted to leave the store. A security employee alerted King to Carnegay and, before asking to see a receipt, King began to strike Carnegay, according to the lawyer.
“This tomato not only cost him the dollar they overcharged him. It also cost him over $75,000 in medical bills, which I intend to get them to pay many times over.”
Prosecutors reportedly dropped charges against Carnegay–who was accused of assaulting King–a year after the incident.
Prosecutors are retrying King after his first trial ended in a mistrial. WSB-TV indicated that mistrial was called in July after King admitted to falsifying a police report. During the trial, defense attorneys argued that the officer’s actions were necessary to make an arrest.
WCGL reported that King retired as Atlanta police conducted an internal investigation.
[Featured Image: WSB-TV video screenshot]