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Acadia Sheriff provides details on arrest that sparked protest

Posted at 9:45 AM, Oct 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-22 12:14:03-04

A recent arrest in Acadia Parish sparked a protest and rally this week calling for a renewed effort to end police brutality.

The rally was held Tuesday at the Martin Luther King Center and following the march, protesters attended the city council meeting. The group hoped to call attention to the case of Edward Troy Yokum Jr., who was booked into the Acadia Parish jail on October 12. They say Yokum is a victim of police brutality.

Sheriff KP Gibson tells KATC that Yokum was arrested after deputies pulled over a vehicle that was in violation of a Hurricane Delta curfew on October 12. Deputies had run his name for warrants and were preparing to impound the vehicle when Yokum ran, Gibson says. Deputies used a taser on him, and he was injured when he fell on the pavement. He was transported to the hospital, where he was examined, treated and released, and then deputies took him to jail and booked him.

Gibson on Wednesday said the incident was under review, because any time force is used by his deputies that results in an injury that sends someone to the hospital, that incident is fully reviewed. Read more here

On Thursday morning, the sheriff released more details on the arrest and says that his review found that deputies followed policy and handled themselves properly. He says prior to the protest on Tuesday, neither he nor his staff were contacted regarding the arrest.

"Review of this matter shows that the deputies on scene followed policy and handled themselves properly. For the record, myself nor any member of my staff was contacted by anyone regarding this issue prior to to the protest on Tuesday evening," Gibson said.

Read his full statement below on the arrest:

A recent arrest has led to a protest earlier this week in Crowley. This arrest was made by deputies with the Acadia Parish Sheriff’s Office.

When an arrest results in an injury requiring medical attention, a review of these types of incidents is began by our administration to assure policy was followed.

This incident occurred on October 11th during the mandated curfew due to Hurricane Delta. Deputies responded to the area of Kathy / Meadows apartments regarding shots being fired in the area.

As deputies arrived in the area, a vehicle was observed to be traveling in the area of where the call originated. Being a curfew was in place, deputies conducted a stop on the vehicle as part of their investigation. The rear passenger was observed and believe to be placing something under the seat in front of him.

Occupants were removed from the vehicle and asked for drivers licenses / identification. No one was able to provide this information.

After conducting an inventory search of the vehicle, deputies discovered illegal narcotics. A firearm was also discovered in the same area where deputies observed the rear passenger earlier placing an unknown object.

Deputies on scene went to detain the rear passenger who was standing at the rear of the vehicle. This passenger was discovered to have 3 active arrest warrants. Two for domestic abuse with child endangerment and a bench warrant.

As a deputy attempted to detain this individual, he resisted the deputy and began to flee. The deputies pursued this individual giving commands to stop but he did not. A deputy then deployed his taser at which time the individual fell to the ground on the pavement, thus receiving his injuries from the fall to the pavement.

The individual was handcuffed after brief struggle and was transported to a local hospital for treatment. He was later booked on the warrants and resisting arrest. The incident regarding shots being fired remains under investigation.

My review of this matter shows that the deputies on scene followed policy and handled themselves properly.

For the record, myself nor any member of my staff was contacted by anyone regarding this issue prior to to the protest on Tuesday evening.

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