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Lancaster officer will not face disciplinary action following tasing incident

On Friday, Mayor Danene Sorace addressed a spotlight hanging above the city,A viral video last Thursday shows ...

Posted: Jul 9, 2018 3:41 PM
Updated: Jul 9, 2018 3:41 PM

On Friday, Mayor Danene Sorace addressed a spotlight hanging above the city,

A viral video last Thursday shows an incident involving a Lancaster police officer using a taser to subdue 27-year old Sean Williams.

Authorities say Williams wasn't complying with their orders while advocates say conflicting orders led to an unnecessary use of force.

Mayor Sorace says the officer involved will not be fired or suspended for the incident.

"The preliminary findings of the investigation are that his actions complied with the city's current use of force and taser policies, which authorizes use in various situations including a failure to respond to multiple verbal commands," said Sorace.

Following the incident, Sorace says changes are coming.

A revision of the use of force and taser policy will allow officers to only tase a suspect if faced with direct physical confrontation.

Also next year, every sworn officer will be equipped with a body camera.

The city is currently pursing grant money through the Department of Justice to pay for $500,000 in body cameras.

Sorace said a pilot program of the body cameras will start by the end of this year, with or without the grant money.

"In isolation, we know body cameras cannot address all concerns. But they can provide a measure of hope and transparency for our community and for the police, as well," said Sorace

Further steps Sorace says they plan to take will include a push to recruit a more diverse group of officers.

They will also look to appoint a panel made of community leaders to be a part of the development, review, and revision of the new policies.

Sorace asks anyone who may be interested in being considered for the panel to contact the city.

Lancaster NAACP leaders and activists with Lancaster Stands Up say they are disappointed the officer will not receive disciplinary action.

But Eliza Booth with Lancaster Stands Up is optimistic about the city's plan, saying she believes the steps are needed to hold people accountable.

"Not just your superior, the people that you work for here in the city...It is the citizens that you are here to protect and serve and that we are able to hold people accountable when there are cases of injustice," said Booth.

Sorace said the changes won't be a quick fix but can put Lancaster at the forefront of police-community relations reform.

"I feel such a deep and profound responsibility to this community to binding up the hurt, addressing the concerns, and implementing the changes I have outlined," said Sorace.

The Lancaster County District Attorney's Office is still conducting it's own independent review of the incident to determine if there was any criminal conduct.

Williams is also seeking $75,000 in personal damages through a federal excessive force lawsuit.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 313942

Reported Deaths: 7240
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto21580258
Hinds20330415
Harrison17879309
Rankin13594278
Jackson13429246
Madison10088217
Lee9970174
Jones8370163
Forrest7670152
Lauderdale7188241
Lowndes6387146
Lamar622486
Lafayette6184118
Washington5332133
Bolivar4801132
Oktibbeha462198
Panola4582106
Pearl River4506146
Marshall4435103
Warren4386121
Pontotoc420172
Monroe4107133
Union410076
Neshoba4030176
Lincoln3962110
Hancock378486
Leflore3493125
Sunflower335990
Tate333384
Pike3316105
Scott315773
Alcorn312768
Yazoo311469
Itawamba299777
Copiah296865
Coahoma295179
Simpson294988
Tippah288168
Prentiss279760
Adams278782
Marion269080
Leake267473
Wayne262641
Grenada261386
Covington258281
George247848
Newton246261
Winston227081
Tishomingo226667
Jasper221048
Attala214273
Chickasaw207757
Holmes188873
Clay185254
Stone182433
Tallahatchie178541
Clarke177980
Calhoun170532
Yalobusha164238
Smith162334
Walthall133945
Greene130533
Lawrence128524
Montgomery126742
Noxubee126734
Perry126338
Amite123042
Carroll121828
Webster114532
Jefferson Davis107033
Tunica105226
Claiborne102430
Benton99525
Humphreys96533
Kemper95728
Franklin83623
Quitman80716
Choctaw76318
Wilkinson67230
Jefferson65528
Sharkey50217
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 531404

Reported Deaths: 10985
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson765501522
Mobile41036805
Madison34789503
Tuscaloosa25788453
Montgomery24340589
Shelby23449249
Baldwin21154308
Lee15882171
Calhoun14511314
Morgan14306279
Etowah13843353
Marshall12232223
Houston10570281
Elmore10068205
Limestone9974151
Cullman9676194
St. Clair9661243
Lauderdale9427241
DeKalb8831186
Talladega8227176
Walker7241277
Autauga6926108
Jackson6814112
Blount6678137
Colbert6306134
Coffee5519119
Dale4838111
Russell441538
Chilton4296112
Franklin426082
Covington4129118
Tallapoosa4023152
Escambia393677
Chambers3573123
Dallas3551152
Clarke351161
Marion3122101
Pike310977
Lawrence300398
Winston274473
Bibb260964
Geneva250477
Marengo249564
Pickens234461
Barbour231057
Hale223077
Butler216069
Fayette212562
Henry188844
Cherokee185245
Randolph180542
Monroe177540
Washington167339
Macon159650
Clay156756
Crenshaw152557
Cleburne148941
Lamar142535
Lowndes138853
Wilcox127130
Bullock122841
Conecuh110529
Perry107726
Coosa107628
Sumter104732
Greene92534
Choctaw60724
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