La. MP seen in violent viral video has a history of excessive force claims

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Image of article titled Louisiana sheriff's deputy who repeatedly slammed black woman's head to the ground has a history of excessive force lawsuits against him

Photo: zef art (Shutterstock)

La sheriff’s deputy Jefferson Parish which was videotaped last month as he repeatedly banged a black woman’s head against the sidewalk was the subject of nine federal civil rights lawsuits for excessive force.

Through NOLA.com, the deputy was identified as Julio Alvarado, a 16-year veteran of the sheriff’s office, who was appointed in the most excessive combinations of force among the other current deputies in the department. The woman in the video, Shantel Arnold, previously told investigators she was walking home after being assaulted by neighborhood boys when Alvarado approached her and asked her to stop and talk to her.

Witnesses said he then came out and threw Arnold to the ground without provocation, which led to the assault shown in the viral video.

More from NOLA:

The sheriff’s office, in accordance with its usual policy, did not respond to a request for identification from the deputy when asked on Thursday. But the office said it opened an internal investigation into the MP’s actions soon after the incident, although Arnold did not file a complaint. This is a step the sheriff’s office often does not take, even in cases where citizens complain about the inappropriate use of force.

The probe remains open. At the same time, the bureau released a statement Wednesday saying the video had been “selectively edited.” The statement claimed that Arnold was intoxicated and that she had resisted arrest.

Imagine trying to justify the actions of a man – with a notorious history of excessive force, no less – who violently slammed a woman’s head on the ground so hard she ripped out some of her braids. It can’t be me, man.

It should also be noted that witnesses at the scene denied that Arnold resisted Alvarado and that Arnold said she was not intoxicated, according to NOLA.

Among the civil rights lawsuits brought against Alvarado, NOLA reports, is a 2016 lawsuit that claimed he grabbed a 14-year-old Hispanic boy and slammed his head against concrete while threatening to have him kicked out, him and his family. Another included a native of Honduras who claimed that Alvarado and three other MPs beat him and stole more than $ 2,000 during a traffic stop. These two cases were settled in court.

The Louisiana ACLU issued a statement saying that “Alvarado’s continued use by the sheriff’s office, despite his history of excessive use of force, is part of a disturbing pattern.”

Nora Ahmed, the legal director of the Louisiana ACLU, added this in a tweet:

“We are talking about a police service that is fully aware that it employs officers who engage in this type of misconduct, and yet knowingly and willfully turns a blind eye to that conduct.”



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