Dearborn police chief says use of force in controversial arrest was justified

Video of arrest went viral

Police chief: Use of force during rough arrest by Dearborn officers were justified
Police chief: Use of force during rough arrest by Dearborn officers were justified

DEARBORN, Mich. – Police in Dearborn are painting a different picture of a controversial arrest in the middle of the street.

Original Story: Dearborn police officer under investigation after video of arrest goes viral

There are new angles of the arrest of a man with multiple warrants, but also a well-documented mental illness.

According to the Dearborn Police Department, officers were called March 30 after Jaquan Murphy had walked into traffic, occasionally forcing drivers to stop.

In another video, an officer finds Murphy about a block away holding food, a phone and a donation sign. Murphy begins to struggle with the officer, which Dearborn police described as an attempted punch. The video then shows the altercation spilling out into traffic and several bystanders jump into stop Murphy from getting away.

The video then cuts again to what appears to be police body cam footage, in which Murphy can be screaming, “Kill me.”

It’s unclear where that video came from as the arresting officer said his body camera isn’t working.

Murphy then begins to shout repeatedly that he needs medicine and that he cannot breathe. More officers arrive on scene and carry him to a police vehicle, which took him to a hospital.

Dearborn Police Chief Ronald Haddad said their officer wasn’t in the wrong.

“At no time was there any more force used than what was necessary,” Haddad said. “People will be critical of the fact that Mr. Murphy has had what looks to be mental illness issues for a long time, but there’s not blame to be affixed here. I’ll just say our systems don’t work well with this at-risk population.”

Murphy had four warrants out for his arrest at the time and has had numerous interactions with the police. Haddad did not confirm if the arresting officer knew those things or not.

Haddad said the bystanders that got involved did what they were supposed to do, but that he wasn’t going to recommend that people get involved in police business whenever they see it.

Accountability For Dearborn, the group that released the footage put out the following statement Friday:

More: Metro Detroit Crime News

About the Authors:

Grant comes to Local 4 from Oklahoma City. He joins the news team as co-anchor of Local 4 News Today weekend mornings and is a general assignment reporter.

Dane is a producer and media enthusiast. He previously worked freelance video production and writing jobs in Michigan, Georgia and Massachusetts. Dane graduated from the Specs Howard School of Media Arts.