Police officer indicted for false drug arrests
A Georgia police officer has been indicted for accusations that he illegally charged a man with drug possession during a 2012 arrest.
A Dekalb County grand jury brought forth the motion Thursday against Officer Demetrius A. Kendrick on the charge of violation of oath by public officer.
A DeKalb Superior Court Judge set a $10,000 bond for Kendrick and he was given 24 hours to turn himself in to the DeKalb County Jail, authorities said. If convicted, he faces up to five years in prison, prosecutors say.
Police said Kendrick has been on restrictive duty (meaning he’s off the streets) since sometime after the drug planting allegations were made until the time he was indicted on Thursday. He is now on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of an internal investigation, police said.
Prosecutors say Kendrick, who has been on Dekalb county’s force for five years, wrongfully arrested Alphonso Eleby in July 2012. Eleby was charged with marijuana possession despite not having an drugs on him.
Kendrick was caught on film planting drugs on Eleby. Officers claimed they smelled marijuana and arrested the person in the vehicle. A video of the incident shows officers serching Eleby’s car, and Kendrick tossing a bag of weed next to him.
In the police report, Kendrick wrote that while arrested Eleby, “I observed Mr. Eleby throw a small piece of a green leafy substance behind him.”Charges against Eleby were dropped in March.
An internal investigation into Kendrick’s conduct was started this month.
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