Atlanta Cops Charged With Aggravated Assault After Attacking Two Black College Students
The six officers have been charged with a variety of crimes after assaulting two college students.
Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard has announced charges were filed against the six officers involved in a horrifying assault that was caught on video, according to WSB-TV.
Lonnie Hood, Roland Claud, Mark Gardner, Armond Jones, Willie Sauls and Ivory Streeter have each been charged with some combination of aggravated assault, pointing or aiming a gun, simple battery and criminal damage to property, ABC News reported.
Video of the incident played on local news outlets before racking up views online, as Blavity previously reported. Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms faced withering criticism about the incident before she announced two of the officers had been fired.
“Some time during the night, I saw very disturbing video of two young college students who were in downtown Atlanta yesterday evening. Our officers are working very long hours are under a very high amount of stress, but the use of force is never acceptable,” Bottoms said.
Hood, Streeter and Gardner can be seen in the video repeatedly tasing two young Black students who were sitting in their car. The two students attended Morehouse College and Spelman College.
Here is the video. On LIVE TV the APD just broke car windows, slashed tires, tazed both passengers and arrested both passengers for NOTHING. RIPPED THEM OUT OF THER CAR. #AtlantaRiots #ATLFORUS #BlackLivesMatter pic.twitter.com/9XFDEdq7qr— black lives matter (@imactuallynina) May 31, 2020
"I'm so happy that they're being held accountable for their actions, there was not one justifiable thing that they did. I hope they are all held accountable because it's not OK," Taniyah Pilgram, one of the students who was assaulted, said during a press conference on Tuesday.
Messiah Young, the other student who was seen being beaten and tased by police, had his wrist fractured and received 24 stitches for a large cut.
Despite the charges, only Gardner and Streeter have been fired while Hood, Claud, Jones and Sauls have transitioned to desk duty. The officers have until Friday to turn themselves in.
"I feel a little safer that these monsters are off the street and no longer able to terrorize anyone else from this point on. We just hope there is a change in the police culture," Young said on Tuesday.