City takes swift action to charge cop accused of abuse of homeless man; resigns

    Saying the Ellis Administration will not tolerate or condone misconduct by officers, the Monroe Police Department has arrested and charged one of its own officers accused of kicking a handcuffed homeless man in the face in an April incident.

    Officer Jared P. Desadier was arrested this week, and charged with malfeasance in office and second-degree battery in the aftermath of actions surrounding the arrest of Timothy Williams on April 21st. His bond was fixed at $30,000.

   The warrant containing details of Desadier’s action has been sealed by a district court judge. Police sources report that several officers are named in the warrant and the department has not completed its investigation into the level of their involvement.

Desadier has since resigned as a police officer and is wearing a court-ordered monitoring device

    Williams told the Free Press that eight officers, all members of the city’s infamous “HEAT” team, surrounded him on the night of April 21st for undetermined reasons. Afraid for his life, Williams said he ran about a block and was caught by officers. He said he held his hands in the air, lay on the ground, and put his hands behind his back to avoid being hit by officers.

    Williams said Desadier kicked him in the face at least twice while another officer hit him in the back. He said Desadier also slammed him on the hoods of at least two cars while other officers watched.

    Williams said they charged him with having a child’s toy pistol in his backpack, and possessing a potpourri flower bowl also in his backpack. When charges were filed the toy pistol was called a fake automatic pistol and the potpourri bowl was called a crack pipe officers said fell out of his pocket.

    The arrest came as the city’s mayoral election was in full steam, but his attempts to file reports to internal affairs were ignored. After the July 11th mayoral election, a full investigation into Williams’ complaints began with the help of police body cams.

    The official incident report obtained by the Free Press indicated that there were eight officers involved in the arrest of Williams, including officers Smith, Aitken, Payne, Miley, Crowson, Robinson, Thigpen, and Desadier.

    Three other officers who were not directly accused of abuse of force have been placed on administrative leave.

    Once the investigation is complete body cam footage is expected to be released to the public.

    The city is investigating all of the particulars surrounding the incident including what role the other seven officers played in the actual abuse of force. The department is also reviewing why Williams’ complaints to internal affairs were not acted upon and why the Major in charge did not pursue an investigation of the incident or other officers did not report the abuses, even though they were active participants.

     Mayor Ellis released a statement last week in which he said his administration will not condone police misconduct.

    “The City of Monroe and the Monroe Police Department will not tolerate or condone misconduct by officers nor the mistreatment of any of our citizens,” Mayor Friday Ellis said in a provided statement. “We are conducting this investigation with the highest degree of integrity possible. Our officers take an oath to protect and serve our citizens, and our officers perform their jobs dutifully and in accordance with that oath every day.

Officers who break the law or violate policy will be held fully accountable, and we will keep this process as transparent to the public as possible within the limits of an ongoing investigation,” Mayor Ellis said.

    Over the years, a few police officers have given the department a bad name over abuse of force issues. No charges have ever been file against a MPD officer over abuse issues.

The most infamous incident was the “murder” of William Henderson in 2004, in which five police officers shot Henderson 17 times and fired 12 stray shots in the homes of residents, but no charges were brought against any of the officers.