Arrest altercation between man, GSP draws social media ire

Arrest altercation between man, GSP draws social media ire

BLAKELY, Ga. (WALB) – A traffic stop that turned into an arrest between the man being charged and a Georgia State Patrol (GSP) trooper is drawing fire on social media.

The incident:

The incident happened on December 14.

The GSP trooper pulled over a man, later identified as Zachary Williams, on Court Square for failing to maintain a lane, according to a GSP incident report.

After he was pulled over, troopers said in the incident report, “the driver became uncooperative and confrontational.”

The trooper also said that Williams “refused simple verbal commands.” In a video given to WALB News 10, Williams told the trooper that he wanted to speak with the trooper’s supervisor and wanted more officers to respond before cooperating.

The trooper then attempted to arrest Williams. The trooper tried to open Williams’ door, but he closed the door and then the trooper used force to open the door, according to the incident report.

The trooper used his baton and harsh verbal commands to try to get Williams out of the vehicle. According to the incident report, Williams tried to take the baton and the trooper punched him to try to stun him. After this, the incident report states, Williams grabbed the trooper’s wrist and forearm and pulled him into the vehicle. The trooper punched him again.

The altercation continued before the trooper pulled out his taser. The incident reports Williams reached for the taser to try to disarm the trooper. The trooper gave loud verbal commands to Williams to get on the ground.

Williams was taken into custody when a Blakely police officer arrived. He was charged with obstructing a law enforcement officer and removing or attempting to remove a weapon from a public official.

Here is a copy of the incident report:

The exchange that is doing the rounds on social media:

WALB News 10 obtained copies of video showing the exchange before and after the trooper pulled the taser.

This video shows the beginning of the exchange:

This video shows what happened just before the trooper pulled out his taser and what happened afterward:

WALB News 10 reached out to the Georgia State Patrol. The agency provided the following statement about the incident.

“At the beginning of the stop, the trooper gave the driver a legal order to produce his driver’s license, which the driver refused to do. The trooper then informed the driver that he was under arrest for refusing to comply with his lawful orders and told him to exit the vehicle, which the driver refused to do,” GSP said in a statement said.

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