On Tuesday (January 24), the Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Arkansas announced that a grand jury has indicted Crawford County Sheriff’s Deputies Zachary King and Levi White for using excessive force in an arrest.
King, 27, and White, 32, are charged with two counts of federal civil rights violations for using excessive force on a 27-year-old man during his arrest at a gas station, according to a statement by U.S. Attorney David Fowlkes. in Mulberry, Arkansas on August 21, 2022
The incident sparked public outrage when a man at a gas station filmed law enforcement officers who were called to the gas station after the man threatened a gas station employee and posted the video on social media.
Count one of the indictment alleges that while the arrested man (identified as RV in court documents) was lying on the ground, White hit him several times. The second count of the indictment alleges that King hit the arrested person several times, including while the arrested person was lying on the ground.
The federal document, stamped on January 11, states that “acting under the guise of law, willfully deprived R.V., a person known to the Grand Jury, of the right guaranteed and protected by the Constitution and laws of the United States, to be free from unreasonable seizures, which includes in himself the right to be free from unreasonable use of force by a law enforcement officer. Specifically, while arresting RV with two other officers, LEVI WHITE hit RV several times while RV was on the ground. R.V. was injured as a result of the offense.”
If found guilty, White and King face a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison on charges of excessive force, up to three years of parole and a fine of up to $250,000. A trial is scheduled for April 3 in the US District Court for the Western District of Arkansas.
Police officer Mulberry Tell Riddle, who was also involved in the arrest and is on administrative leave, was not named in the Grand Jury indictment.
The FBI field office in Little Rock investigated the case. The case is being handled by Assistant US Attorneys Dustin Roberts and Devon Still of the Western District of Arkansas, and trial attorneys Anna Gottfried and Michael Songer of the Civil Rights Division’s Criminal Division.