Mississippi ex-cops charged with murder and manslaughter over New Year’s Eve tragedy

In a recent development in Mississippi, a grand jury has formally charged two former police officers with murder, while another former officer has been indicted on a manslaughter charge.

This decision stems from an incident involving the death of a Black man, Keith Murriel, during an arrest on New Year’s Eve. Notably, this event was captured on video, which clearly depicted Murriel being repeatedly shocked with stun guns as he was held down.

The incident unfolded in the state capital, Jackson, where local officials released body camera footage this Wednesday. The video reveals former officers Avery Willis, Kenya McCarty, and James Land struggling to place handcuffs on Murriel over a period of roughly 10 minutes, during which he was subjected to numerous shocks from stun guns.

According to authorities, the officers initially engaged with Murriel while arresting him on allegations of trespassing at a hotel shortly before the stroke of midnight on December 31, 2022.

Based on court records, McCarty and Willis have been indicted on charges of second-degree murder, while Land faces a manslaughter charge. The officers were put on administrative leave following the incident. Subsequent to this, McCarty’s employment was terminated in February, followed by Willis and Land in April.

During a press conference on Wednesday, Jackson Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba said that the release of the body camera footage was made possible as the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation had concluded their investigation into the incident.

It is important to note that all three indicted officers were once members of the Jackson Police Department, and they were indicted on May 12.

Video of the arrest can be viewed HERE.

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