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Brusly officers march

Two residents who joined the march from Lukeville Upper Elementary to Town Hall hug as they walk in to Brusly Town Hall Monday, Dec. 3. 

Two former Brusly police officers who resigned amid an investigation by State Police into an incident with a 14-year-old student at Brusly Middle School will go before a grand jury on Dec. 13.

State Police completed their investigation of the confrontation Thursday, State Police spokesman Senior Trooper Bryan Lee said. No arrests have been made.

The grand jury will decide what charges, if any, should be brought against the officers. The grand jury will hear testimony from former Brusly police officers Anthony “Kip” Dupre and Dan Cipriano along with teachers who were witnesses and Brusly Police Chief Jonathan Lefeaux, prosecutor Tony Clayton said.

The leaked video footage of the Oct. 5 incident, first shown by WAFB-TV earlier this month, will also be presented to the jury.

The incident caught on office surveillance video caused a stir with several residents who descended upon Brusly Town Hall to demand justice on Monday, Dec. 3.

Shaeeta Williams, an Addis resident with a child at Brusly Middle School, told the town council residents want the facts and to ensure that an incident like this will never happen again.

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Shaeeta Williams

Shaeeta Williams, a spokesperson for the march, speaking at Brusly Town Hall Saturday, Dec. 3. 

“We come in peace, but we also come disturbed and upset and confused on how the situation took place,” Williams said.

Williams said racial tensions is the “elephant in the room” in Brusly and nationally. She questioned why officers were called to the office and whether they will be hired by other departments despite their resignation.

“We come asking questions about the facts and to make sure that a situation like this never happens again,” Williams said.

Baton Rouge activist Silky Slim, wearing a noose around his neck, said the incident has upset people across the nation.

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Silky Slim

Silky Slim speaking to the Brusly Town Council on Saturday, Dec. 3. 

“When we see this type of policing—this Klan type of policing in these little Klan type of towns—we let that message be clear, we come in peace but we will also go to war,” Slim said.

Baton Rouge attorney Kwame Asante is gearing up for a civil lawsuit on behalf of the student claiming excessive force and police brutality as the basis of the suit, but he is exploring all possibilities he said.

The student sustained injuries to his face, chin and back during an encounter with the two officers. Asante and the child’s grandmother also assert the student sustained psychological injuries as a result of the incident.

Brusly Police Chief Jonathan Lefeaux asked State Police to investigate after reviewing footage of the incident and questioning the officers’ use of force, he said in a prior interview. Both officers were put on paid administrative leave in October and resigned in November.

The student never exhibited behavioral problems at school requiring the support of the school resource officer, Asante said. The grandmother called the police on the student in the home on some occasions prior to the incident. Asante described those incidents as “regular behavioral issues for middle school children.”

The student was placed in the WBR School District alternative school as a result of the incident. The School District is working to develop a plan to ensure the student’s success, Asante said. However, litigation against the school and school district is not out of the question yet.

“The school played an integral part in not properly assessing him,” Asante said, claiming the school bears a level of responsibility for the injuries sustained by the student through negligence.

“He’s been able to matriculate through the system even with these conditions but he’s done it with a lot of struggle,” Asante said. “Had [the student] been properly diagnosed and assessed then the conditions that led up to the encounter with the police would not have happened.”

 

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