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Details emerge about former deputy

Sunday, Aug 18, 2013 5:19 PM
Last updated Monday, Aug 19, 2013 8:45 AM
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A supervisor at one of Brian McDuffie’s previous jobs advised the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office to keep him under close supervision if hired, according to personnel records obtained through the Georgia Open Records Act.



Last week, the sheriff’s office fired the 33-year-old deputy accused of using excessive force against a 15-year-old who was being detained after he was seen near a burglary investigation.

According to his termination letter, another officer was trying to get a second cuff on Kyvan James’ wrist when McDuffie stepped on his back, “stabilizing him on the ground,” and hit him in the head with a metal flashlight.

“The suspect then began screaming and asked for his ‘momma’ and you threatened him with further injury if he didn’t shut up,” the letter said.

According to the letter, the deputy outweighed James by 160 pounds.

Sheriff Richard Round­tree said the decision to use a foot to stabilize the suspect was defensible but not recommended. He said striking James with the flashlight was unjustifiable and would not be tolerated.

“You knew or should have known that this type of force could result in serious or lethal injury,” the letter stated. “You admitted that during training you have been instructed to avoid striking someone in the head with an impact weapon.”

According to McDuffie’s personnel file, he was previously suspended for actions at two agencies.

After his discharge from the U.S. Navy in 2001, he worked law enforcement jobs in Waynes­boro, Midville, Sar­dis and Richmond County. He worked as an officer in all jobs except at the Midville Po­lice Department, where he was police chief from October 2006 to August 2007.

All of the agencies, when questioned before his Rich­mond County hire in March 2008, said McDuffie would be eligible for rehire. However, former Waynes­boro Police Chief Karl Allen recommended “close supervision if he is hired.”

According to Allen, McDuffie was reprimanded several times during his nearly five years at the department for abusive language, abuse of sick leave and being late to work. In 2002, he was suspended for three days for “conduct unbecoming an officer.” Allen did not elaborate.

Nine months after he was hired in Augusta, McDuffie was suspended for two days and sent to the disciplinary review board for unsatisfactory performance and duty to care for county property.

According to a disciplinary report, a robbery suspect detained in McDuffie’s police cruiser got her right hand out of a handcuff, climbed into the front seat through the cage partition and drove away. Officers chased the suspect from Deans Bridge Road, to Ninth and Adams streets. During the chase, the woman struck the curb and a road sign.

“By leaving the partition open and leaving the vehicle running, Deputy McDuffie give the suspect avenue to escape,” the report read.

McDuffie continued to work for the sheriff’s office until 2011, when he left to focus on his tree removal business. He returned in June 2012.

McDuffie has 10 days to appeal after termination, after which the disciplinary board has 45 days to make a final decision.

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JRC2024
9309
Points
JRC2024 08/19/13 - 08:41 am
5
6
Just got a summons for jury

Just got a summons for jury duty the week of Sept 23.. No money for her if I am on the jury. But I usually do not get picked. The defense always strikes me because I am a business owner and a conservative. I still can't understand why I get picked every year. Seems like there is a population big enough that I would not have to go but every several years.

palmetto1008
9782
Points
palmetto1008 08/19/13 - 08:53 am
5
3
For those who missed my, what
Unpublished

For those who missed my, what I thought was obvious, sarcasm at 7:19...I'm sorry.

Little Lamb
46976
Points
Little Lamb 08/19/13 - 09:00 am
4
2
Jury Duty

That's funny, JRC; I've lived in Richmond County for thirty years (moved here when I was an adult) and have never been called for jury duty.

pantherluvcik
628
Points
pantherluvcik 08/19/13 - 09:00 am
9
7
itsanotherday thanks for

itsanotherday thanks for acknowledging the fact that you don't know my social or cultural background, because you don't. And I don't know yours either but apparently you seem to think in some way it's better than mine because you made the statement. The reality of the situation is that he was a 15 year old kid and he was scared and trying to reach his mom. Unfortunately for some African American males their experience has not been positive with the police, and they tend to share those horror stories. Of course I would not have fled from the police, but everyone does not live in that elitist realm you are from. Apparently he was wise to run from McDuffie and he probably would have gotten hit whether he ran or not. But thanks for your opinion on the matter.

seenitB4
90880
Points
seenitB4 08/19/13 - 09:05 am
3
2
Jury duty

Llamb...I was called a few times....interesting time as I recall....there must be a reason you have never been called.

seenitB4
90880
Points
seenitB4 08/19/13 - 09:06 am
7
3
Now now River ...with this

"McDuffie needs to go back in the tree cutting business and take his media supporter with him."

Now you know you don't want Austin climbing those big bad trees..:)

palmetto1008
9782
Points
palmetto1008 08/19/13 - 09:18 am
5
4
I've found that listening to
Unpublished

I've found that listening to instrumental jazz on the radio between the hours of 3 and 6 on weekedays s much more entertaining and educational. Try it.

dizzy dictator
107
Points
dizzy dictator 08/19/13 - 09:39 am
5
7
Its tough being a scapegoat

So sick of hearing about the weight difference. Maybe Officer Gandy was dealing with an adrenaline rush from the boy and could be the reason for the struggle to get the second cuff on when Officer McDuffie approached. Adrenaline will make anyone stronger regardless of weight. As for the hitting in the head with an "impact weapon" and how it's forbidden according to policy, using your fist could cause a blunt force and head injury. Has anyone ever seen mugshots with black eyes before, with charges of obstruction listed and did they get fired? Did the investigation take place right after the incident because he broke policy or did it happen after the mother complained? I don't know either person involved, I'm just listing observations.

dizzy dictator
107
Points
dizzy dictator 08/19/13 - 09:43 am
6
5
Keep this in mind

As for the comments saying they believe to understand why a 15 yr old kid would run because he was scared, I also understand that the officers can't determine what the next move will be from anyone including a 15 yr old.

Lorraine
140
Points
Lorraine 08/19/13 - 09:59 am
7
5
This deputy should have never

This deputy should have never been rehired given his past behaviors. What was Sheriff Strength thinking when he rehired this deputy?

Little Lamb
46976
Points
Little Lamb 08/19/13 - 10:12 am
6
7
You Better Slow Down

That was a Beatles song, wasn't it?

Don't worry, all the Richmond County deputies will be running a little slower now when they're chasing after runners. They will be like dogs chasing cars; running but never quite catching.

Riverman1
86998
Points
Riverman1 08/19/13 - 10:19 am
12
1
I don't think the speed of

I don't think the speed of the chase was ever a factor with the 260 lb. McDuffie.

Casting_Fool
1174
Points
Casting_Fool 08/19/13 - 10:24 am
11
8
If the young man had been

If the young man had been Caucasian, there would never have been a story at all. Had that been my own son, he'd have gotten whacked in the head when he got home, for good measure. You do not run from an officer when approached. There's more to this story than is being told in the media. Maybe we'll get lucky and the truth will come out.

happychimer
18653
Points
happychimer 08/19/13 - 10:38 am
7
4
Hitting someone in the head

Hitting someone in the head can cause brain injury or even death. Anybody with any sense at all should know that.

Little Lamb
46976
Points
Little Lamb 08/19/13 - 10:45 am
5
4
Question

If a Richmond County sheriff's deputy questions a person of interest and the person starts fleeing, and the deputy begins pursuit, but the person gets away because he outruns the deputy — does The Augusta Chronicle publish a story on that?

For that matter, does the deputy even file a report?

InChristLove
22481
Points
InChristLove 08/19/13 - 10:45 am
10
5
Odd thing, my 16year old son

Odd thing, my 16year old son at the time was stopped by the police, handcuffed and taken to jail. After investigating realized it was a mistake in identity and released. No bruised eye, no running from police, no outrageous mom, no disrespect to authority, yes sir and no sir, no hit in the head....but a very good learning experience to keep him on the straight path. So whether a child is 15or 16....manners and respect can be taught.

happychimer
18653
Points
happychimer 08/19/13 - 10:56 am
8
3
The 15 year old will still

The 15 year old will still face a charge for running from police. Sheriff Roundtree said that charge still stands.

Little Lamb
46976
Points
Little Lamb 08/19/13 - 11:02 am
6
5
Distress Call

Do the police now think that the woman who made the call saying there were intruders in her house was mistaken?

corgimom
34165
Points
corgimom 08/19/13 - 11:14 am
7
3
As a police officer has told

As a police officer has told me, "If you're in fear, if you think you are in danger, call 911. We'd rather come out and have it be nothing than for you to hesitate and have a tragedy."

It doesn't matter if she was mistaken or not. Although, if I saw some stranger standing in my back yard at 11 pm at night, I'd call 911 too!

daphne3520
950
Points
daphne3520 08/19/13 - 11:18 am
0
0
I guess you'se never heard of the
Unpublished

GOON SQUAD!" EVERY PD and Jail and Prison has one!

Darby
26945
Points
Darby 08/19/13 - 11:25 am
6
3
"He acted improperly by running, but i'm sure

the average 15 year old would do the same thing unless they have had discussions with their parents to tell them otherwise."

.
Guess I wasn't average because there is no way at age 15 that I would have run from a cop.

Little Lamb
46976
Points
Little Lamb 08/19/13 - 11:50 am
3
2
Inside

The woman told the 911 dispatcher that persons were inside her home, not in the back yard.

Marinerman1
5086
Points
Marinerman1 08/19/13 - 12:48 pm
4
4
Sorry Panther

Sorry Panther, I don't agree. If he had not run, there would have been no hitting, kneeing, or black eye. If he had not run, and damage was done to him, we would all be crucifying McDuffie in this Court of Public Opinion. And it would be justified, and I would agree that he be fired. McDuffie has not been charged with any offense.

ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts
9175
Points
ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts 08/19/13 - 01:03 pm
5
4
If

If you knew the facts that some people know you'd realize how ridiculous most of these comments sound. I won't put them out here but you can bet they'll materialize sooner or later and won't all be about McDuffie!

seenitB4
90880
Points
seenitB4 08/19/13 - 01:38 pm
3
3
I think coldbeer is right

This will probably end up in court & even more facts will come out....the officers have to depend on each other for help.....this has become a very touchy situation....I, for one, will cool my comments.

harley_52
23959
Points
harley_52 08/19/13 - 02:01 pm
4
1
I'm Curious....

....what, if any, legal peril ARC faces after hiring (and re-hiring) a known problem employee even after having been warned that he required "close supervision" by a former employer and then not providing such supervision.

Was ARC negligent in sending such an armed police officer out into the public without appropriate supervision?

I have a feeling we'll be finding out....

harley_52
23959
Points
harley_52 08/19/13 - 02:04 pm
2
1
Little Lamb....On Jury Duty

A few years ago I called to find out why I had never been called to jury duty while my wife had been called frequently. I was told that I wasn't in the database from which jury duty candidates were drawn. I asked to be put into the database, the lady assured me I would be, and I was called the following year.

You might have the same issue.....

harley_52
23959
Points
harley_52 08/19/13 - 02:15 pm
5
2
"Did he ever work for the Columbia County Sheriff's Office?"

Article doesn't say.

Did he ever work for the Cobb County Sheriff's Office? How about the Glascock County Sheriff's Office? Or, the Wheeler, Berrien, Emanuel, or Cook County Sheriff's Office? Did He ever apply for employment at Columbia County, or any of these other counties?

Heck, I'll bet there are dozens of Georgia County Sherriffs offices where he didn't work.

Do you have a point?

kissofdeath
423
Points
kissofdeath 08/19/13 - 03:14 pm
0
6
Sheriff Roundtree need to do

Sheriff Roundtree need to do a better job screening new deputies. I thought they give new hire a test to see is they bias are was brought up in a household around parents that used the N - word alot.

AutumnLeaves
8463
Points
AutumnLeaves 08/19/13 - 03:23 pm
4
4
I hope the truth comes out

I hope the truth comes out and appropriate action is taken. I want to believe Officer McDuffie is not guilty. He doesn't agree with the way he has been portrayed in the termination letter or the media. I am giving him the benefit of the doubt unless there is proof otherwise. I do not want to see morale plummet in the RCSO if he is not guilty and is thrown under the PC bus like this. If an officer can't take whatever action necessary if there is a suspect trespassing on my property during a possible burglary and is spotted fleeing, why bother calling the police?

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