When business owner Kevin Penn contacted Decatur police for help on March 15th, he was already holding the man who tried to rob his liquor store at gunpoint. All he needed at that point was for his local law enforcement agency to come and arrest the individual. Unfortunately, Penn experienced something much different than what he had anticipated.
When Decatur police arrived at Star Sprits & Beverage after a robbery had been reported at that location, it wasn’t long before an arrest was made—but it wasn’t only the suspect who had attempted to rob the store that was taken into police custody [AL.com]. Instead, it was the suspect and the store owner. While the video footage that was recently released on social media doesn’t show the entire incident from start to finish, it does show Penn holding his weapon and the suspect lying on the ground.
At one point in the video, Penn appears to be speaking with police officers, however, there is no audio available. Moments into the video, an officer is then seen walking into the store and punching Penn in the face. Apparently, officers had asked Penn to put his gun down and he allegedly refused. However, with the limited footage and lack of audio, it is difficult to determine whether the allegations that were against Penn are valid.
Alabama Store Owner Files Internal Affairs Complaint with Decatur Police Department and Hires an Attorney
After all was said and done, police officers arrested the shoplifting suspect and Penn, the liquor store owner. Penn was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of obstructing governmental operations. The news source says police accused Penn of “obstructing their investigation of the robbery.” To make matters worse for the store owner who was simply looking to stop a crime from being committed, he suffered a broken jaw and a few of his teeth were knocked out as a result of being punched. Penn’s attorney also told the source Penn had to have his mouth wired shut and underwent several weeks of treatment.
AL.com says that is has requested police reports relating to the incident along with other records such as the personnel files for the officer who punched Penn and unedited bodycam footage.
If you were injured, harassed, or mistreated by an Alabama police officer and would like to discuss your legal rights with an Alabama police brutality lawyer, USAttorneys.com can help you find one in your city. Not only can a police brutality attorney help you file a complaint with the police department but they can assist you with filing a lawsuit in the event you were physically/psychologically injured as a result of the officer’s actions.