Mulberry, AR — Utterly shocking footage was posted to social media on Sunday leading to a storm of controversy and a swift response by officials. The video was so damning that it has led to two Crawford County Sheriff's deputies being suspended and a Mulberry police officer placed on leave.
According to police, they were investigating an incident of a man threatening an employee at a gas station in Mulberry. Police claim that when they responded, the suspect Randall Worcester, 27, punched a deputy, resulting in the horrifying display of police brutality in the video below.
When the video begins, Worcester is under the two deputies and one officer. As the officer in the middle pins down his body, the ones on his head and feet unleash a fury of punches and knee strikes. Worcester is punched more than a dozen times in his face as his head bounces off the concrete.
As Worcester stops squirming, the officer who was punching him then grabs his head and repeatedly smashes it into the concrete. As this point, the woman filming had enough and was compelled to get out of the car to ask the officers to stop.
When she asks them to stop, one of the officers demand she get back in the car and stop filming. The video then ends. The woman who posted the video on TikTok says it was her sister who filmed the incident. She said Worcester was talking with police before they attacked him.
It is unclear if the officers involved were wearing body cameras or if they had them on at the time of the beating.
According to police, Worcester was hospitalized after the incident but has since been transported to jail where he was hit with a laundry list of charges relating to the stop.
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Worcester was jailed on complaints of second degree burglary, resisting arrest, refusal to submit, possessing an instrument of crime, criminal trespass, criminal mischief, terroristic threatening, and second degree assault, according to Arkansas state police.
Illustrating the severity of the video is the fact that both departments immediately responded by suspending the officers involved. The governor of Arkansas even felt obligated to respond.
"I have spoken with Col. Bill Bryant of the Arkansas State Police, and the local arrest incident in Crawford County will be investigated pursuant to the video evidence and the request of the prosecuting attorney," Gov. Asa Hutchinson tweeted.
An investigation into the beating is now underway.
"The Arkansas State Police has opened an investigation into the use of force by two Crawford County sheriff’s deputies and a Mulberry police officer in the arrest of a South Carolina man. The incident occurred about 10:40 a.m. today (Sunday) outside a Crawford County convenience store in Mulberry. The investigation was initiated at the request of the 21st Judicial District prosecuting attorney," Arkansas State Police said Sunday night.
In a social media post Sunday, Crawford County Sheriff Jimmy Damante stated, "In reference to the video circulating social media involving two Crawford County deputies, we have requested that Arkansas State Police conduct the investigation and the deputies have been suspended pending the outcome of the investigation. I hold all my employees accountable for their actions and will take appropriate measures in this matter."
Below is that video.