Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office investigating arrest caught in viral video

Some people in the public claim that an officer was planting drugs on a suspect.
Some people in the public claim that an officer was planting drugs on a suspect.(Twitter)
Updated: Mar. 17, 2020 at 3:41 PM CDT
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BRIDGE CITY (WVUE) - The Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office is investigating an arrest made in Bridge City that was caught on camera and went viral on social media.

The video shows officer making an arrest of a man on the ground. It also shows a deputy moving what appears to be small baggies around the suspect’s ankles.

JPSO spokesman Capt. Jason Rivarde said deputies were called to the area of Commerce and Sixth streets around 3 p.m. on Monday about a man selling drugs in the area.

Deputies located a male fitting the caller’s exact description near the intersection of Fourth St. and Westewego Ave.

During the drug investigation, the man resisted officers’ attempts to investigate the matter, ultimately leading to his arrest, Rivarde said. A JPSO deputy was bitten by the suspect during the investigation. The deputy was treated and released from the hospital.

“The video in question is part of the evidence that has been collected in this case. It has been alleged by third parties that evidence on the scene was planted by one of our deputies. Our on-scene deputies have been interviewed in this matter and gave reasonable explanations to the actions depicted in the video,” a statement from the JPSO said.

In a later press conference, Sheriff Joseph Lopinto stated that all the deputies who were involved in the arrest were interviewed separately and all maintained that a bag containing pills were removed from the suspect’s pocket during the arrest and placed on the ground.

The suspect, who is identified as Dominique Griffin, was also interviewed and a search warrant was obtained for his cell phone. The search revealed messages showing planned and scheduled drug transactions.

Sheriff Lopinto also added that Griffin apologized for biting a JPSO deputy.

Griffin was not booked with any narcotics charges, but will face charges for battery on an officer, battery on an officer with injury, and resisting arrest with force or violence.

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