Raleigh, NC (PT) – The family of a man, whose beating at the hands of Police went viral on social media following his arrest less than a fortnight ago, have demanded transparency in connection with an incident which community activists have branded as a another example of excessive use of force by Police.
Exclusive video shot by Thomasi McDonald of the North Carolina ‘News and Observer‘ seems to be suggestive of oppressive conduct by police following the arrest of a man whose story went viral on social media. In a candid video interview posted on the ‘News and Observer’ website soon after the incident had taken place, Douglas Hall of Raleigh, brother of Frederick Darnell Hall, whose arrest was videoed by police on the afternoon of Friday 19th August, said that he felt ’empty’ and ‘disrespected’ as a result of his subsequent dealings with officers from both Raleigh and the WakeMed facility; where he was led to believe his brother was being held. Following an attempt to gain access to the suspect at WakeMed in Raleigh, during the course of which he claims to have been threatened with arrest and imprisonment by multiple officers, he and other family members were forced to leave the premises or face charges of Second Degree Trespass in the wake of the arrest of another of their number.
According to a report on the Fox News website posted after Raleigh PD issued an official statement regarding the arrest, the incident began after officers answered a call to investigate a seemingly abandoned car, that had been left unoccupied in the middle of a busy road with music playing loudly out of the windows, on the morning of Friday 17th August. According to Police who had attended the scene the suspect had subsequently been located walking around a nearby intersection with no shirt on and wearing no shoes. What the report failed to reveal, however, was that the man who they later arrested after having first given him a severe beating, suffers from what his Mother has since referred to as a mental disability. Other facts which appear to have been thus far largely ignored by certain elements within the mainstream media are suggestive of his mental health condition having originated following an earlier arrest. This time by the North Carolina Highway Patrol. Although the article did stress that Police did acknowledge that the man appeared to be ‘agitated’ and in an altered state.
During the course of Friday evening. Hall’s brother Douglas attempted to gain access to the suspect at the WakeMed facility nearby, as previously recounted by the North Carolina News and Observer. He and various other relatives of Frederick Darnell Hall were met at the door by eight WakeMed Police officers. When he told them that he had been told to speak to a Captain Jordan he claims that he was told that no officer of that name was serving with the WakeMed Police. After he and those who had accompanied him allegedly showed the officers in question paperwork indicating that they hold power of attorney in connection with certain matters relating to the suspect’s welfare, he claims that a vehicle being driven by officers from Raleigh PD had pulled up behind them.
Douglas Hall also claims that immediately after that a WakeMed officer threatened to put them in jail if they didn’t leave the premises immediately. At this particular point in the altercation his nephew, Demetrious Hannan, was arrested by WakeMed officers; and the rest of the family threatened with arrest on a charge of Second Degree Trespassing if they didn’t leave immediately. At that point they were also told by the Raleigh Police that this was their “final warning.” If they didn’t leave there and then they would all be going to jail. As well as Mr. Hall’s nephew, twenty-eight-year-old Demetrious Hannan, who had earlier been arrested on a trespassing charge, Douglas Hall claims that he had been accompanied by his wife, four year old daughter and one year old daughter as well.
Unsurprisingly, during a press conference streamed online by WRAL the following Sunday afternoon, the family made it clear to reporters they were unhappy with how the suspect was being treated. They also made it clear that they were of the opinion that they would be able to see him at the hospital. As the situation unfolded, however, the suspect ended up being moved to the Wake County Detention Center before any of them were able to visit. By this time Mr. Hall had been charged with two counts of physically injuring a law enforcement officer, assault on a government official, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. He also appears to be facing charges of leaving a vehicle unsecured and not wearing a seat belt.
During the course of the press conference streamed by WRAL over the following weekend his Mother revealed to reporters that this was not the first time that Police had beaten her son unconscious. Among the injuries that she claimed that he had sustained during a previous arrest were hands that had become excessively swollen, quite probably as a result of having been placed in handcuffs that were excessively tight. He also appears to have sustained a number of visible head wounds as a result of allegedly being beaten around the head. Although the incident, which had taken place on Interstate 540, had only involved the North Carolina State Highway Patrol, subsequent to this incident Mr. Hall appears to have developed a history of mental illness, a fact that Raleigh PD appear to have been aware of if his family’s version of events holds truth. All charges against him at the time of his last arrest appear to have been voluntarily dismissed, and his only other recorded arrest appears to have involved a 1994 speeding violation.
Article by Rupert Ferguson for The Pontiac Tribune.