Nearly one year after after two Gwinnett County police officers were fired for allegedly beating Demetrius Hollins while he was handcuffed, a grand jury has issued almost a dozen criminal charges against them.
According to CBS Atlanta affiliate WGCL-TV, the ex-cops Michael Bongiovanni and Robert McDonald will plead not guilty to the charges. The two appeared on video striking and kicking Hollins.
“Bongiovanni, in a split second, highly-intense situation of deescalating the situation, did everything he was trained to,” his attorney Mike Puglise said in a statement.
According to the 10-count indictment, former Gwinnett County Sergeant Bongiovanni was charged with battery for a blow to the face. He is reportedly also accused of pointing a gun at Hollins, burning him with a taster and lying about him resisting arrest, and is being charged with aggravated assault, battery, and false writings.
In the video, McDonald was seen running up to Hollins and kicking him in the head while he was handcuffed.
Hollins, then 21, had been booked at the Gwinnett County jail after the incident on charges of possession of less than one ounce of marijuana, obstruction of a police officer, driving on a suspended or revoked license, operating a vehicle with suspended or revoked registration, and failure to signal.
His mugshot showed his bloodied nose and lips from the encounter.
Hollins attorney, Justin Miller is demanding justice. “We know that these two are bad, and we don’t know how many others, so I’m happy there’s a criminal investigation, and they’re going to go to trial so we can see what’s going on,” he told CBS46.
The attorneys say they are waiting on word of the arraignment date.
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