A former Inkster Police Department officer who was caught on camera repeatedly punching, kicking and tasering an unarmed black man during a routine traffic stop will stand trial, a district court judged ruled on Thursday afternoon.
Former police officer William Melendez was officially charged with assault with intent to do great bodily harm and misconduct in office was fired after a January incident involving victim, Floyd Dent, who was stopped after a minor traffic violation.
Wayne County District Court Judge Sabrina Johnson found that enough evidence was present to put Melendez on trial, while also approving an additional charge of assault with strangulation after Dent testified on his behalf in court, recounting the night he was arrested. Melendez is scheduled to appear for his court date on June 1o th.
A Dash-cam video revealed Melendez dragging Dent out of his vehicle, putting him in a choke hold and striking him repeatedly during the routine traffic stop on Jan. 28th. The video was first obtained and released by NBC affiliate WDIV, back in March.
In the video, Dent can be heard asking; “Why you beating on me like this?” After he was thrown onto the hood of the police cruiser.
A local judge has already dismissed all the various charges against Dent, directly following the video’s release, including the all allegations of resisting arrest and assaulting a police officer. Prosecutors also dropped all drug charges against him as well, after claims of officers planting a bag of crack cocaine in his car during the stop. Although Dent did admit to driving while on a suspended license at the time of the incident.
Back in March, Dent passed a lie detector test in which he was asked whether he verbally threatened the officers, if the officers were correct about the crack cocaine possession allegations, to which he answered NO to each and passed, WDIV reported.
The decision by Judge Johnson follows the Dent lawsuit settlement with the city of Inkster for $1.4 million in damages on Wednesday.
“Money isn’t everything,” Dent, told the station. “You can’t buy happiness.”
Money may not be everything, but it sure can erase a plethora of sins.
I believe this was a case of “bad cop” needing to be reeled in, as I have done followed along with this story and noted several inconsistencies with Melendez’s claims. It is of note that he has been involved in many such cases throughout his law enforcement career and vindicated in all but the current case.
I support our law enforcement community and understand the job they perform, but in instances of corruption within the system, it needs to be dealt with swiftly and efficiently or the cancer can spread. Let’s all remember, that corruption can come in many forms, and it must be dealt with, but those instances of corruption are still very limited and isolated, when taking in the entire scope of the law enforcement community.
We cannot allow the MainStream Media to continue to exacerbate the situation by continuing to propagandize lone instances, making them sound like a widespread epidemic, when the reality, although no less important is much smaller than they are reporting.