STERLING, Va. - A Loudoun County deputy was found guilty of misdemeanor assault last month after body-slamming a handcuffed suspect in June.
Now, video of the incident has been made public and it is getting attention given the newfound focus on cases involving alleged excessive force by police.
Deputy John Gregory is appealing his conviction. His attorney said Gregory believes he was just doing his job.
The video shows 36-year-old Lyle Grenoble, who was charged with being drunk in public, handcuffed and being thrown to the ground by Gregory. It happened in the early morning hours of June 14 after Grenoble was arrested while sitting in his truck outside a bar in Sterling.
Several different cameras captured interactions between these two men. Grenoble's attorney said while his client complained that the handcuffs were too tight, at no time does the video show him cursing, being disrespectful or aggressive.
The deputy's attorney alleges otherwise and said that is why when they pull into the jail's receiving area, Gregory quickly body-slams Grenoble to the ground.
“Something you can’t see in video, he had an ‘I'm going to kill you’ look on his face as he pushed into John,” said Caleb Kershner, Gregory’s attorney. “That is when John's training and his experience, having been assaulted many times before, kind of went into action. He just conducted a maneuver called a takedown.”
Grenoble can be heard asking in the video, “What did I do?” while he claims the deputy pushed a knee into his back while he lied there handcuffed.
“The video speaks for itself,” said Jerry Phillips, Grenoble’s attorney. “If you watch, you can see, and a judge made a finding that he did not aggressively do anything. He did not say anything or do anything to get treated the way he was. It's not acceptable.”
When Loudoun County Sheriff Mike Chapman saw the video, he referred the case to state police who charged the deputy with misdemeanor assault and he was convicted mid-November.
“It would be irresponsible of me for somebody to do something that’s out of bounds as far as what our general orders allow and not take some sort of action,” said Chapman. “So when I saw that, it didn’t look right, it was very disturbing and I wanted it to be investigated immediately."
Gregory had been on the force for ten years. He was fired earlier this month and he has 20 days to appeal that decision.
He has already filed an appeal of his conviction and a date for that new trial will be set next month.
Grenoble was found not guilty on his public intoxication charge. His attorney said he couldn't work for a week after the incident because he is a welder and his hands were numb from the handcuffs.
His attorney said he is considering a civil lawsuit against the county.