MCCOMB, Miss. (WJTV) – The Mississippi State Conference NAACP released a statement regarding a recent viral video of a Mississippi State Trooper arresting a man in McComb.
The video, captured on Friday, August 5, was recorded by a man named Packer Lewis. The video shows one of his brothers, Eugene Lewis, standing in the street in handcuffs as Packer and another brother, Darius Lewis, yell that they are recording the incident.
Suddenly, the officer grabs Eugene Lewis by the neck and pulls him across the street, tackling him to the ground. At one point, the officer appears to use his knee to pin him down.
Packer Lewis said the officer became aggressive after he told the Lewis brothers to leave the scene.
After detaining Eugene Lewis in a police car, the officer then walked toward the other two brothers and pointed a weapon at one of them. After another officer arrived, Packer and Darius Lewis were then arrested.
“The video clearly shows the trooper using excessive force against a handcuffed Mr. Lewis. Mr. Lewis posed no threat to the trooper’s safety, nor was he trying to escape or physically attack the trooper. Thus the actions of this trooper were completely unwarranted and unacceptable,” said Dr. Robert James, President of the Mississippi State Conference NAACP, in a statement released from the conference.
The statement continued, “After reviewing the video, the Mississippi State Conference NAACP is disturbed by the actions of this state trooper. It is unfortunate that the public and family members have to rely on the video of bystanders for transparency and truth in incidents like these. We are thankful that Mr. Lewis’ brother was there to record this incident, but we are saddened that he had to witness what happened to his brother.”
Public officials said an investigation is underway. Authorities have not identified the officer involved nor said what prompted Eugene Lewis to be placed in handcuffs. Packer Lewis said his brother was pulled over for allegedly speeding and then was arrested for having an expired license.
“The State Conference looks forward to the results of the investigation by the Mississippi Department of Public Safety and the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation. We hope these organizations will be transparent about what they find. Regardless, we believe this trooper should be terminated as his actions show he is a danger to those he swore to protect and serve,” the statement concluded.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.