Deputy charged with battery is fired

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A Richmond County sheriff's deputy has been charged with aggravated battery after a fight at a bar last weekend in which a Lexington, S.C., man wound up with a dislocated jaw and two black eyes.

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Kersey  Special
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Kersey

Bryan Johnson was being held at the jail on $25,000 bond. He has been fired from the sheriff's office.

Sheriff Ronnie Strength said Christopher Sean Kersey was treated for injuries after a fight that began on the dance floor of the Country Club Dance Hall and Saloon on Washington Road about 2 a.m. Saturday. Mr. Kersey suffered a broken and dislocated jaw, fractures to both orbital bones, temporary loss of use to his left eye and a shattered right elbow after the fight, a sheriff's report said.

Mr. Johnson allegedly punched and kneed Mr. Kersey numerous times -- even after he was handcuffed, the report said.

The former deputy was in uniform at the bar on Washington Road but was not on duty and was not working security for the club, the sheriff said at a news conference Tuesday.

The sheriff said he directed both Internal Affairs and the Criminal Investigation Division to look into what happened.

According to Mr. Johnson's report, he was trying to break up a fight on the dance floor when Mr. Kersey struck him in the eye with his fist. He said Mr. Kersey continued to fight even after he was subdued on the ground.

After the fight, Mr. Kersey was charged with obstruction of a deputy and taken to Medical College of Georgia Hospital.

Sheriff Strength said a second deputy, listed as Michael Shore in the report, witnessed the event and helped with Mr. Kersey's arrest.

Based on interviews with Mr. Kersey, the sheriff said, Deputy Shore did not use excessive force and is not facing any charges.

The sheriff called Mr. Johnson's actions "extremely disappointing."

"I don't have a single person within this agency that does not know how I feel about things like this," Sheriff Strength said. "And when it happens there's no doubt in anybody's mind, especially the folks who work here, if they are wrong what actions we are going to take."

Mr. Johnson was hired by the sheriff's office in February 2007 and was working on the road patrol, records show. Disciplinary records show that he committed several minor infractions, including speeding and being at fault in an accident. He was suspended for one day in November after another deputy clocked him driving 80 mph on Gordon Highway. He also faced a one-day suspension in April for carrying his weapon into the jail.

Reach Adam Folk at (706) 823-3339 or adam.folk@augustachronicle.com.

Comments (83) Add comment
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HillGuy
7
Points
HillGuy 07/29/09 - 02:00 am
0
0
After he serves his jail

After he serves his jail time, I see The Jerry Springer Show in his future.

Craig Spinks
817
Points
Craig Spinks 07/29/09 - 02:46 am
0
0
Like Clay, Ronnie doesn't

Like Clay, Ronnie doesn't play.

charliemanson
1
Points
charliemanson 07/29/09 - 03:34 am
0
0
It is refreshing to see RCSD

It is refreshing to see RCSD willing to give one of their own a speeding ticket as was the case of the deputy giving Mr. Johnson a speeding ticket. But the total number of disciplinary actions that Mr. Johnson received as a deputy is high for such a short period of time of being on the job. Any other business would had fired Mr. Johnson before now.

justus4
99
Points
justus4 07/29/09 - 04:35 am
0
0
Of course an attenpted murder
Unpublished

Of course an attenpted murder charge would seem excessive, but that guy appears to have taken a rough beating especially already being handcuffed... Johnson will get off with probation.

opiner
2
Points
opiner 07/29/09 - 06:37 am
0
0
Johnson may not receive much

Johnson may not receive much of a sentence after his loss of job, but the civil action against the county is going to be ugly.

sdrwtcn
0
Points
sdrwtcn 07/29/09 - 06:41 am
0
0
Let me get this straight,

Let me get this straight, deputy beats the living crap out of somebody while breaking up a fight and Deputy gets fired???? Is that in Augusta? That NEVER happens in my neck of the woods. Everybody down here ALWAYS deserves ANYTHING they dish out. I,m moving over there!!!!

sdrwtcn
0
Points
sdrwtcn 07/29/09 - 07:40 am
0
0
They should move him down

They should move him down here, our deputies have special powers, they can beat the crap out of anybody, anytime for any reason and if your mama shows up, she gets the beat down too! He was just in the wrong area!

Retired LTC
2
Points
Retired LTC 07/29/09 - 08:17 am
0
0
Hopefully fatty will lose

Hopefully fatty will lose some weight in jail.

philsreel
26
Points
philsreel 07/29/09 - 08:27 am
0
0
Poor Bryan, Didn't you know

Poor Bryan, Didn't you know that excessive force on any WHITE man will not be tolerated here?

easy breezy
14
Points
easy breezy 07/29/09 - 08:47 am
0
0
I wonder what percentage of

I wonder what percentage of law enforcement use their authority when it's not needed?

juantez
233
Points
juantez 07/29/09 - 08:55 am
0
0
Remember Beat Downs are for
Unpublished

Remember Beat Downs are for BLACKS ONLY.
You would be getting as award and not jail. NEVER BEAT DOWN ONE OF YOUR OWN

CarlA
114
Points
CarlA 07/29/09 - 09:03 am
0
0
Where are Jesse and Al?

Where are Jesse and Al?

freespeech
0
Points
freespeech 07/29/09 - 09:04 am
0
0
I hope somebody beats

I hope somebody beats Johnson's fat head to a pulp. I'm so glad he was fired. We don't need that kind of low down dog on our law enforcement team.

xpresso1
68
Points
xpresso1 07/29/09 - 09:10 am
0
0
Obviously this guy was

Obviously this guy was obsessed with his so called powers, why else would he be wearing his uniform while off duty?? Please.. u cant tell me that nobody saw how this guy truly was before it went his far. I mean a pattern was there... speeding because he was in his "cop" mobile... wearing his gun in places his should not... then finally showing up at a bar wearing his uniform then beatng the brakes off this guy.. The sheriffs office needs better screening during the hiring process. This is not their first loose cannon.

guess who
0
Points
guess who 07/29/09 - 09:14 am
0
0
the cops eyes look find to

the cops eyes look find to me, but the other guy he swollen up

liveandlearn
0
Points
liveandlearn 07/29/09 - 09:14 am
0
0
Juantez, where the hell do

Juantez, where the hell do you get off saying beatdowns are for blacks only?!?!?!?!?! You know what, forget that. Yard work is for Mexicans only. Hey Juantez, come clean my yard for me you freakin idiot. Sorry, I can't pay you in cash.... all I have are pesos.

sueboo418
37
Points
sueboo418 07/29/09 - 09:18 am
0
0
Yeah the cop looks fine

Yeah the cop looks fine because the other guy was handcuffed and down on the ground. The guy was already in custody, geez. What a real man, beating somebody up like that. I'm all for the law but this guy is certainly NOT a good representation of it.

blues550
374
Points
blues550 07/29/09 - 09:20 am
0
0
As the AUG turns.
Unpublished

As the AUG turns.

HeSaidItNotMe
0
Points
HeSaidItNotMe 07/29/09 - 09:25 am
0
0
This guy should of been

This guy should of been working in McDuffie County. The 3 musketeers up there could of 'disappeared' this situation no problem.

Boston93
117
Points
Boston93 07/29/09 - 09:38 am
0
0
Here's a clue. Stay out of

Here's a clue. Stay out of bars. If you drink, do it at home.

MJDW
0
Points
MJDW 07/29/09 - 09:43 am
0
0
Opiner reread paragraph five

Opiner reread paragraph five and what civil action, not on duty not on my tax dollars, this is all on Bryan Johnson's dollars. And did Sean Kersey get the two black eye's before Johnson broke up the dance floor flght? More on this story to come!

celticfiveo
12
Points
celticfiveo 07/29/09 - 10:19 am
0
0
you get what you pay for. the

you get what you pay for. the county officers have no real pay, no real retirement and stressful, dangerous work. If it was not for the true professionals who who work for the love of the job you would see a lot more of this.

Raydani
0
Points
Raydani 07/29/09 - 10:21 am
0
0
You know whats really crazy

You know whats really crazy is that the ONLY reason this guy got fired is because information got into the wrong hands and good ol' Ronnie HAD to do something. I have been in the criminal justice field for quite sometime and RCSO deputies ALL seem to brag about how they can use excessive force and get away with it whenever they want to. Sheriff Strengths wife "helps out" many poor souls so strung out on drugs by cutting them breaks and helping them out when their drug addict ways get them in trouble...AND he does nothing about it! Richmond county needs a new sheriff...one that truly cares about all its people and NOT just the drug addict that the sheriffs daughter dated or that drug addicts friends!

AAQueen
18
Points
AAQueen 07/29/09 - 10:37 am
0
0
Theres not enough inforation.

Theres not enough inforation. I believe the deputy did it, BUT, it could be possible that some or most of the injuries was obtained in the dance floor fight.
You know, benefit of doubt.

Tots
25858
Points
Tots 07/29/09 - 10:48 am
0
0
To friends and family members

To friends and family members of the police officer who dont wont us to voice opinions before we get the facts.As the old saying goes a picture is worth a thousand words.

Raydani
0
Points
Raydani 07/29/09 - 10:48 am
0
0
So the fact that he continued

So the fact that he continued to hit him after in handcuffs is justified.....I think NOT!!!!! How the man sustained all the injuries is of little relevance to me. Once that officer had the subject in handcuffs, his use of force should have stopped. He deserves everything he gets and MORE!

Tots
25858
Points
Tots 07/29/09 - 10:59 am
0
0
AAQueen@10:37-If thats true

AAQueen@10:37-If thats true about the injuries occurring from the fight on the dance floor,Then why didn't they arrest the other man? If there really was a fight both men would have gotten arrested.Whats the other mans name? What does he have to say about this?

WW1949
19
Points
WW1949 07/29/09 - 11:00 am
0
0
Raydani, I agree with you.

Raydani, I agree with you. Use whatever force is needed but not to the extreme. Once down leave down and stop. What the deputy did was way out of line with county policy and with what is right. Glad he was fired because we do not need preceived power hungry people. True the officers have a hard job and mostly deal with the lowest of society but a beat down is not necessary under any circumstances. I hope I am on the jury if this comes to trial.

leoswife
0
Points
leoswife 07/29/09 - 11:03 am
0
0
Raydani--not ALL Deputies use

Raydani--not ALL Deputies use excessive force. Dispite what most of you people think, there are good Deputies out there just as there are good people and bad people. This guy does not represent the whole force. This Deputy was wrong and has paid and will pay for it.

Tots
25858
Points
Tots 07/29/09 - 11:05 am
0
0
Why did Kersey try to break

Why did Kersey try to break the fight up?He wasn't even working there.If Deputy Shore was being paid to work there. He should have gotten the fight under control.

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