/  04.21.2022

A former officer in Ferguson, Missouri has been ordered to serve probation for assaulting a handcuffed man and lying about it on a police report. As the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported, Jackie Matthews, 63, was sentenced to three years of probation by a federal judge on Wednesday (April 20).

In March 2020, Matthews responded to a domestic disturbance call that led to the arrest of a man identified as “G.R.” He was handcuffed and placed in the back of the patrol car before things took a turn for the worse. According to the publication, the men got into a heated exchange, which ultimately escalated to a full-out physical altercation. The former cop opened the door of the car and challenged him to get out, further inciting the argument. At one point during the altercation, Matthews attempted to force G.R. back into the car. The man then allegedly spit on the former officer, who grabbed him by the throat and hit him in the face multiple times.

In a police report filed later, Matthews falsely claimed that G.R. kicked the glass and the car door with full force. He accused the man of lunging in his direction and spitting in his face during the arrest, adding that he only opened the rear door to refasten the man’s seatbelt. Footage from Matthews’ body camera eventually showed that his allegations against G.R. were not true. He was terminated from the Ferguson Police Department in May, just about a year after he joined the police force.

The former Ferguson officer was indicted in November 2020 on a federal civil rights charge of deprivation of rights under the color of law and falsifying records in a federal investigation. He pleaded guilty to filing a false report, and his civil rights charge was dropped as a result.

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