Relatives of Ronald Greene were initially told that he had died from injuries he sustained in a crash after he failed to stop for a traffic violation outside Monroe, La., in May 2019, according to a lawyer for the family.
But body-camera footage obtained and published by The Associated Press on Wednesday showed Mr. Greene, 49, screaming, “I’m sorry” and “I’m scared,” after troopers opened the door to his car and jolted him with a stun gun after a high-speed chase.
“I’m scared!” Mr. Greene screamed, according to the video. “I’m your brother! I’m scared!”
According to The A.P., which said it had obtained 46 minutes of video footage from the encounter, one trooper wrestled Mr. Greene to the ground, put him in a chokehold and punched him in the face. Another trooper briefly dragged him by his ankle shackles as he lay on the ground, according to the footage.
Mr. Greene was jolted again with a stun gun while he was on the ground and handcuffed, the footage shows. The A.P. reported that the troopers, who were white, left Mr. Greene, who was Black, facedown and moaning for more than nine minutes, as they wiped blood from their hands and face.
photos circulated online that appeared to show Mr. Greene’s bruised and bloodied face and damage to his car that the family said was inconsistent with a fatal accident.
The photos were shared on social media after the president of the N.A.A.C.P.’s Baton Rouge branch posted them on Facebook.
The images were also included in a wrongful-death lawsuit that Mr. Greene’s family filed in May 2020 arguing that he died as a result of a struggle with troopers that “left him beaten, bloodied and in cardiac arrest.” The lawsuit is pending, Mr. Merritt said.
A single-page crash report reviewed by The Associated Press said that troopers tried to stop Mr. Greene for an unspecified traffic violation just after midnight on May 10, 2019. Mr. Greene, who lived in Monroe, refused to pull over and troopers pursued him, The A.P. reported, citing the document.
The report says the chase ended when Mr. Greene’s vehicle crashed, according to The A.P.
“Greene was taken into custody after resisting arrest and a struggle with troopers,” the report says, adding that he “became unresponsive” and died as he was being taken to a hospital. The report did not mention any use of force by troopers, The A.P. said.