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Charges against a Black man beaten by a Louisiana State Police trooper have been dropped by the state’s Attorney General after three years.
Aaron Bowman suffered a broken jaw, broken ribs, and a gash to his head following a 2019 traffic stop with Louisiana trooper Jacob Brown. Brown used a flashlight, with a clip attached used to break glass and beat Bowman 18 times as “pain compliance” intending to get Bowman in handcuffs.
Brown failed to report his use of force and mislabeled his body-camera footage in what investigators described in internal records as “an intentional attempt to hide the video.” State police didn’t investigate the attack until 536 days later, and only did so after a lawsuit from Bowman.
Bowman was charged with improper lane usage, resisting an officer by flight, resisting an officer by force or violence, and simple battery of a police officer.
“I felt that after Jacob Brown was indicted, this would exonerate our client Aaron Bowman. Just because the footage was already out at that time showing that he was beaten. So I could not for the life of me, understand why Aaron still had these charges. Today, we’re just glad that he’s finally exonerated from these charges, and we want him to feel better and let the community know that Aaron did nothing wrong,” said attorney Donecia Banks-Miley.
Louisiana Law Enforcement has a history of violence
Brown was indicted by a Federal Grand Jury on September 23, 2021 and charged with aggravated second-degree battery and malfeasance in office, over two years after the beating.
If convicted, Brown faces up to a decade in prison.
Louisiana State Police troopers have also been under scrutiny for their involvement in the 2019 death of Ronald Greene.
In the same Monroe area where Bowman was beaten by police, Ronald Greene was brutally beaten and killed by police in an attempted coverup.
State police initially blamed Greene’s death on a minor crash after a high-speed chase in May of 2019. Yet after bodycam footage that was initially hidden for two years was obtained and an investigation by the FBI conducted, details of a cover-up and Greene’s brutal assault were apparent.
In an interview with WBRZ, former State Trooper Carl Cavalier discussed the cover-ups that kept colleagues from facing disciplinary actions for Greene’s death.
Cavalier was not involved in the interaction with Greene, but after receiving a copy of the investigative notes from another trooper, he decided to speak out.
“I love what I do,” said Cavalier. “But we still have murderers, in my eyes, on the job. Guys who received a slap on the wrist for their roles in the Ronald Greene incident are unpunished… patrolling the streets and left on the job.”
Cavalier was fired by the Louisiana State Police for what they claimed was a lack of “loyalty” to the department.