Press Releases

Citizen Cell Phone Recordings Used As Evidence

West Baltimore, Maryland (June 10, 2019) – Today, former Baltimore Police Officer, Arthur Williams was convicted of second-degree assault and misconduct in office for assaulting a citizen on the street last August.

The case was prosecuted by Steven Trostle of the Police Trust and Police Integrity Unit.

On August 11, 2018 at approximately 11:40 am, Baltimore Police Probationary Status Officer (PSO) Arthur Williams and another officer were on duty in a marked patrol car in the 2500 block of Monument Street.  They exited their patrol car, and Williams approached a citizen telling him to “come here.”   The citizen repeatedly asked why he was being stopped and a confrontational exchange of words ensued.

The conversation escalated and Williams grabbed the citizen’s arm when the he attempted to walk away.  The officer also told the citizen to provide his identification several times.  When the citizen asked why, Williams explained he should not have tried to walk away.  Williams wanted to write a “citizen contact receipt” and when questioned by the citizen as to why he was getting a contact slip, the officer dismissed the citizen’s questions and pushed him into the building.

The citizen put his hand up to stop Williams from touching him but Williams punched him in the face and head multiple times.  Williams continued to attack the citizen by striking him multiple times on the head, face, neck and upper body without any resistance.  Williams repeatedly punched the victim and forced him into a set of concrete steps where Williams laid on top and continued to strike him.   

Officer Williams reported to his Command staff that he observed the victim possessing marijuana and advised him to put it away or leave.   However, this initial contact was not captured on any body worn camera footage. Williams advised that he then left the scene only to come back and find the citizen still in possession of the marijuana, but no footage depicted the victim in possession of marijuana.   Williams claimed that he approached the victim with the intention of giving him a citizen contact receipt for the suspected marijuana and to recover the substance.   However, no substance was recovered or submitted to the Evidence Control Unit for this incident. 

Williams’ account of the incident included him giving the victim a “lawful order to stop” and hitting the citizen after he yelled in his face.  Williams also reported that he continued to strike the victim only in an attempt to place him under arrest.   There was no indication from any of the video recordings that the victim pushed the officer.  Instead, video recordings confirm that the victim, after being struck by the officer, did not resist or fight back.

The incident was captured on body worn cameras, as well as a citizen cellular phone recording.

The victim suffered multiple abrasions, as well as lacerations to his mouth.  He was transported to the emergency room and admitted because he needed immediate medical attention as a result of the injuries he received during the physical altercation with Williams.   

"Public trust is critical in the fight to make Baltimore safer. Today's conviction is yet another example where we’ve successfully held a defendant fully accountable to the law regardless of his occupational status," said State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby. "This defendant abused his position and put a citizen he was sworn to protect in danger and now he will have to face the consequences of his deplorable actions."

Williams’ sentencing is scheduled for August 9, 2019.  He faces 10 years for the second- degree assault charge.  Misconduct in office is a common law offense and does not carry a maximum sentence.

 

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Contact: Melba Saunders Phone: (443) 984-6078 Email: msaunders@stattorney.org