Ohio police are facing a lawsuit after blinding a passenger in a routine Fayette County traffic stop by tasering him directly in the eye.
Dashcam footage shows a Sheriff’s deputy and an Ohio State Highway Patrol Trooper used excessive force in deploying a taser and stunning Matthew David Kelly twice, causing him to lose vision in his right eye.
The lawsuit states that the Sheriff’s deputy had no probable cause, and that the State Trooper did nothing to stop the tasering incident.
Kelly was a passenger in the truck, asleep at the time, when the driver was pulled over and arrested for being under the influence of alcohol.
The footage shows Kelly struggling inside the truck and getting caught up in his seat belt as the Highway Patrol Trooper attempts to wake him up before the deputy tries to drag him out of the vehicle.
After failing to pull Kelly completely from the vehicle, and leaving him still tangled in the seatbelt, half way out of the truck, the deputy fired the taser which struck Kelly directly in the eye.
With his hands on his head and clearly disorientated from being abruptly awoke and brutalized, Kelly received another shot from the taser directly into his eye.
Yes BOTH shots hit him in the same eye. Paramedics who later tended to Kelly said that he suffered “near total loss of vision.” The barb can be seen sticking out the eye on camera.
The Fayette County Sheriffs Office failed to return an Appalachian Area News request for comment but when asked about the incident by local reporters, Sheriff Vernon Stanforth said, “Deputy Sines was not reprimanded for the allegations.”
Sine said he “reviewed the video thoroughly” and believes the deputy “acted within policy.”
It is still not clear just exactly what laws Kelly broke by sleeping in the passenger seat of a vehicle.
Dash cam Footage: