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Deputy fired after investigation into teen's injuries

Monday, Aug 12, 2013 2:26 PM
Last updated Tuesday, Aug 13, 2013 1:14 AM
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Richmond County sheriff’s Deputy Brian McDuffie was fired Monday for his involvement in an Aug. 3 incident in which a 15-year-old boy was injured.

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Kenya James talks to Augusta Commission members about her son Kyvan's encounter with police, in which she said he was struck repeatedly with a flashlight.  EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
Kenya James talks to Augusta Commission members about her son Kyvan's encounter with police, in which she said he was struck repeatedly with a flashlight.

Kyvan James, who was charged with obstruction of an officer, and his mother, Kenya James, alleged that deputies used a metal flashlight to repeatedly strike the teen in the head.

Three deputies had tried to detain the teen and another juvenile about 11 p.m. while investigating a burglary on Leawood Court in Heph­zibah, but Kyvan James fled on foot. The deputies caught up with him near his Gebhardt Court home.

The sheriff’s office has not provided the names of the other deputies involved. McDuffie, 33, was rehired by the agency in June 2012 after being employed there from 2008 to 2011.

Kenya James was speaking to the Augusta Com­mis­sion’s public safety committee Monday when Sheriff Rich­ard Roundtree announced McDuffie’s firing. She had her attorney and friends by her side, while Kyvan was at home with a migraine, she said.

The mother said she was looking not for money but for change at the sheriff’s office, in the form of diversity, proper training, education and respect.

“I’d like to think my son’s incident would have gone a lot differently if there had been an African-American at the scene that he could have related to,” she told commissioners. “I live in a predominantly black neighborhood, and all the officers that responded to that call were Caucasian.”

She said her son, a black teen with dreadlocks, is part of a demographic “that doesn’t see law enforcement officers as friends” and instead might flee the police.

“He made a mistake; he panicked, he had an error of judgment, but he’s 15,” she said.

James said proper training might enable officers to respond with force appropriate to a suspect’s size, then seek medical attention if necessary.

“Once the dust settles, after you hit someone upside the head, ask them if they require medical attention, or if not, do the humane thing and call for medical attention,” she said.

James said she had to beg deputies to call for medical attention for her son.

Education at home and in school would help young people respond appropriately to law enforcement, she said.

As a single mother raising two young men, James said she lacks the experience of what black men encounter with law enforcement, “so therefore, outside help would be appreciated.”

Respect of the badge and of residents are also necessary, she said.

“I’m sure the officers are taught this and are told this, but there needs to be something in place to ensure that respect is happening in these encounters,” James said.

Commissioner Alvin Ma­son told James he was glad the incident “wasn’t just a 100 percent negative encounter,” noting the responding sergeant whom James said corrected the deputies’ behavior.

James said the internal affairs officers who investigated the incident also “have been great.”

Commissioner Marion Wil­liams said that despite the commission’s lack of jurisdiction over the sheriff’s office, “we do have concern for the taxpayers of Augusta, your son included.”

Bad things do happen to black men, Williams said, referring to the Trayvon Martin case.

“That incident that happened in Florida just don’t happen in Florida,” he said.

James noted that her son had no criminal record and tested negative for drugs at the hospital where he was eventually taken.

Commissioner Bill Lock­ett said James “had done an outstanding job” presenting her concerns and urged youngsters not to flee the police.

“I know it’s tempting to run, but don’t run,” he said. “I hope that your son will not have any long-lasting adverse effects from what happened.”

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Little Lamb
46418
Points
Little Lamb 08/13/13 - 06:37 pm
4
2
False Data

specsta said:

Whites commit more crimes than blacks. But there is no connotation for a white male as a "criminal element". Whites use more drugs than blacks. But there is no connotation that white males are drug thugs and dealers. White men commit more rapes than blacks. They rob, steal and commit violent crimes more than blacks.

Not on a per capita basis.

chascushman
6653
Points
chascushman 08/13/13 - 06:48 pm
3
2
"But it is the black male who
Unpublished

"But it is the black male who is portrayed as the picture of crime in this country. The "scary black male".
"
specsta, if look at who is committing most of the violent crimes it is the "black male who is the picture of crime in this country".

oldfella
620
Points
oldfella 08/13/13 - 07:25 pm
2
0
Ratios matter - percentages matter

Hey specsta - you are correct, white people commit more crimes, because we are 85 percent of the U.S. population. Yet when 15 percent of the population (pretty much the minority population in Columbia County for example) commit the majority of the crimes that's okay to you? Maybe they should just ban The Jail Report. Because black, white, Asian, etc. you get arrested, you will be in that paper, period. I'm not a math wizard, but a large ratio/percentage of the pictures are of black faces. Yet they are the smallest fraction of the Columbia County population. This is quite a mystery...can you explain it to me please?

palmetto1008
9782
Points
palmetto1008 08/13/13 - 07:52 pm
1
0
There really are better data
Unpublished

There really are better data available than the Jail Report, oldfella. And, even those data need to be viewed with a certain amount of caution. What arrest data reveal may not reflect an accurate depiction the characteristics of those who are committing crimes.

validPoint
982
Points
validPoint 08/13/13 - 08:09 pm
2
1
Issue Settled

A look at the Uniform Crime Report will paint a clear picture of racial arrests. It takes away all speculation. It also plainly shows that there is a disparity between blacks, especially young black male arrests, and even those that are incarcerated than those that are white. Blacks take the lead in numbers. The ironic thing is, there are folk who do not care what color your skin is, they hate you simply because you are American, and will not hesitate to take the opportunity to kill you at the drop of a hat. For that reason, I fail to understand the insanity of racial hatred that lurks with. Seems a bit insane to me.

palmetto1008
9782
Points
palmetto1008 08/13/13 - 08:42 pm
1
2
ValidPoint, what are "racial
Unpublished

ValidPoint, what are "racial arrests?" You can not look at UCR arrest data and conclude much of anything other than these are the characteristics of people who were arrested in a given year.

happychimer
18030
Points
happychimer 08/13/13 - 08:46 pm
3
3
The charge still stands for

The charge still stands for the 15 year old 98 pound boy that the cop beat. I bet the cop feels like a real man now that he beat up a kid. Brutality by anyone is wrong. I don't care who you are.

myfather15
55725
Points
myfather15 08/13/13 - 09:44 pm
2
0
Of course; the liberal answer to the per capita crime rate is;

ALL police are racist and ALL of them TARGET black people more, therefore they are arrested and incarcerated more often!! The same old tired jargon, over and over again!!

specsta; once again opines, without providing a single shred of evidence to back up their opinions. They must expect us to simply believe them, because they said it!! Don't believe your eyes, ears and brain, just believe what we tell you!! (Liberal motto)

palmetto1008
9782
Points
palmetto1008 08/13/13 - 09:42 pm
1
2
myfather, the academic
Unpublished

myfather, the academic literature is full of empirically-based evidence that would suggest there is legitimacy to what specstra spouts.

myfather15
55725
Points
myfather15 08/13/13 - 09:55 pm
4
1
specsta

"We have yet to grow up - many Americans, although grown, are still just ignorant, deceived little children - believing that someone's skin color is a factor in their character as a human being. How stupid is that?"

And this is true because? Because you said it? You said "many" Americans; can you substantiate this claim? Do you have perfect numbers, to back up this claim? Because I believe the VAST majority of American's have moved PAST the attitude YOU claim. You seem to be one of those who are living in the past!!

Oh, I must have forgot; traditional conservatives always have been ignorant simpletons to the highly intelligent, radical leftists. As I've stated many times; you are only smart, intelligent and educated, if you're a radical leftist. That is a radical leftists with racist views!!

myfather15
55725
Points
myfather15 08/13/13 - 09:58 pm
1
1
palmetto

Academic literature, written by whom? THAT is the question!! It still boils down to whom YOU believe.

Would anyone like to provide some of this "evidence" or should we once again, take your word for it?? Since "Empirical evidence" is based upon the senses; my sense is telling me this is junk!!

Also, you do realize that SAYING there is empirical evidence, is not actually providing evidence, right? I mean, in order to prove something, you actually have to do more than just SAY it's true!!

palmetto1008
9782
Points
palmetto1008 08/13/13 - 10:09 pm
0
0
The literature is
Unpublished

The literature is immense....there is not a link to a website.
By WHOM? By researchers who are highly educated and trained to conduct such research...and then it is peer-reviewed by hose who have similar levels of expertise.
If you think it's junk....that's fine. That's why you do what you do and I do what I do....there's plenty of room for both of us.
But the literature consistently revels that higher educated police officers make much better officers in many respects ....both in terms of the agencies they serve and citizen satisfaction.

validPoint
982
Points
validPoint 08/13/13 - 10:31 pm
0
0
Self Explanatory

@Palmetto 1008, in reference to the question you directed to me, I believe my prior comment is self explanatory. I will say this much, the term you used "Racial Arrest" is one that beats the heck out of me because I never heard of it before. When i use the term "beats the heck out of me", I am saying i don't understand what you are talking about...."Racial Arrest"...hmmm....never saw that on the books before...oh, i get it, the conclusion is made based on the description given...yeah, that's it...the description, and that is why i tied the term in with the description given by the UCR. Is this Inductive, or Deductive reasoning...oh, well, it is what it is.

myfather15
55725
Points
myfather15 08/13/13 - 10:28 pm
2
0
I'm not trying to be nasty,

I'm not trying to be nasty, honestly; I just simply believe you can't trust everything you read. You have to be very careful of the authors, and their political and ideological leanings. If they lean right, their research usually shows such; as well if they lean left in their personal beliefs, their work usually leans left. All I'm saying is that IF I read something, I also try to find out a little about the authors; to form an educated opinion on whether it's believable.

"By researchers who are highly educated and trained to conduct such research...and then it is peer-reviewed by hose who have similar levels of expertise."

By researchers (unnamed) who are highly educated. Sorry, but I can't blindly believe this. But as you stated, there is plenty of room for us to believe differently.

palmetto1008
9782
Points
palmetto1008 08/13/13 - 10:33 pm
0
0
You used "racial Arrests" at
Unpublished

You used "racial Arrests" at 8:09 p.m., validpoint. And, not, you are wrong...what you are concluding from the UCR data cannot be concluded. although you can say they speak for themselves, is true. But you are concluding that the numbers reflect the breakdown of crimes committed by the people who fall into the (artificially created) racial categories.

palmetto1008
9782
Points
palmetto1008 08/13/13 - 10:42 pm
0
0
and by the way, valid, the
Unpublished

and by the way, valid, the UCR does not even address the incarcerated population that you include that it does in your 8:09 post. And, concluding or inferring anything other (such as crime committing rates by socio-demographics characteristics) than that's the simply incarcerated population is fraught with problems....as specstra pointed out earlier.

validPoint
982
Points
validPoint 08/13/13 - 10:44 pm
2
0
History

When we look at the word History, and add the extra letter "s" next to the "s" that is already given, we get the two words His Story. The ironic thing is, His Story might not be My Story, and My Story is the one story that I am empowered to relate to the most.

myfather15
55725
Points
myfather15 08/13/13 - 10:52 pm
1
0
"But the literature

"But the literature consistently revels that higher educated police officers make much better officers in many respects ....both in terms of the agencies they serve and citizen satisfaction."

Several questions: Have these researchers, been personally involved in law enforcement on the streets?

Educated where? Liberal higher learning centers, most commonly referred to as "Colleges"? I'm enrolled in the University of Phoenix online classes; it's astonishing how many liberal professors are teaching there. The total CRAP they teach is absolutely mind boggling!! I WILL be switching to Liberty online as soon as I finish these classes.

Now, I understand that IF you require a college degree, you DO sift out SOME of the less desirable candidates. But I believe it's simply because you're taking people who have put more time and effort into earning their degrees. It does NOT mean you will get LESS violent or less corrupt officers. People with college degrees commit MANY crimes!!

I also don't believe a degree should be mandatory! Why? Because in this line of work, you need more common sense than an HIGHER learning degree. I personally know MANY who possess degrees, yet simply can't figure out how to talk to people on the streets. You have to get to their level, you can't talk above them!! You will never get people on the streets to connect to you, if you're going in there speaking to them with a college vocabulary!! Also, that college vocabulary won't help you when trying to solve a burglary, assault, domestic violence or murder. You know what will? EXPERIENCE!!

Ask ANY veteran GBI Agent or other law enforcement officer, would you rather have a guy with a paper degree or a person with incredible street wisdom? The answer would surprise you!! I will believe THEM and my 16 years of experience, over some researcher who has never beat the streets!!

That degree might help you write an articulate report, but it won't help you with street wisdom!! But, if you've never done the job, I would be surprise if you know what true street wisdom is.

palmetto1008
9782
Points
palmetto1008 08/13/13 - 11:14 pm
0
0
Myfather, I have a huge
Unpublished

Myfather, I have a huge amount a respect for nationwide colleagues of mine who worked the beat as you do and then went to achieve their PhD in criminal justice or criminology and now do what I do. Just as I have as much respect for those who spent 20-25 years in prison and then went on to achieve their PhD and do what I do. Those life experiences only enhance their ability in the classroom and their ability to pose and investigate realistic research questions and add to the body of our knowledge.

Little Lamb
46418
Points
Little Lamb 08/13/13 - 11:28 pm
1
0
Respect

But since I did not go on and achieve my PhD and do what palmetto1008 does, palmetto1008 does not respect me.

myfather15
55725
Points
myfather15 08/13/13 - 11:54 pm
0
0
Boy are they good at word games!!

If you noticed, he didn't say he respects "who worked the beat as you do". He only respects those who went on to get their PhD's.

So, if you're an uneducated officer on the road and didn't get your PhD, you're not deserving of respect.

Riverman1
84970
Points
Riverman1 08/14/13 - 10:33 am
0
0
Myfather is a highly educated

Myfather is a highly educated and intelligent person. It's obvious by his writing on these boards. He also seems to be pretty fair in his assessment of this case.

Palmetto, it's actually pretty easy to obtain PhD's today as you probably know. I don't have one, but I have a BS degree from Creighton, two masters and do very well in a specialized field. I've also written a published book that did very well, thank you very much. I have no idea why you are confronting Myfather since he appears to be supporting the Sheriff in this case as you and I seem to be doing, too. Myfather writes better than you or I do and that says much.

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