A former Kershaw County, South Carolina deputy accused of using excessive force and beating up a man to the point where he was unconscious during an arrest in October was charged this week, according to the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division (SLED).
Johnathan Lewis Goldsmith, 36, was arrested Wednesday and charged with second-degree assault and battery and misconduct in office.
On October 15, Goldsmith — who was working for the Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office at the time — responded to a suspicious vehicle call in a church parking lot. When he arrived, he found a man who appeared to be intoxicated with an empty hand gun holster in the front seat.
Goldsmith attempted to arrest the man and the man resisted, according to the sheriff’s office. Authorities did not say what the man was charged with at the time.
Then, Goldsmith punched the man several times in his head, abdomen, and neck, according to arrest warrants. He used a taser on the man and then closed the patrol car door on his legs multiple times.
The man was knocked unconscious and left with a fractured jaw, missing teeth, and a neck injury, according to arrest warrants.
“What shocked me even more was that my deputy did not immediately render aid or call for medical assistance,” Kershaw County Sheriff Lee Boan said. “The deputy eventually called for an ambulance but felt the need to continue using force to get the injured and handcuffed subject into the back of his patrol vehicle. This is NOT acceptable conduct from a KCSO deputy.”
Goldsmith was fired from the Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office in November.
SLED investigated the case at the request of the Fifth Circuit Solicitor’s Office. As a part of their investigation, SLED officials interviewed witnesses and reviewed body cam footage.
According to online jail records, Goldsmith had not been granted bond as of Wednesday afternoon.
For the assault and battery charge, Goldsmith faces up to three years in prison.
For the misconduct in office charge, Goldsmith faces up to one year in prison and a $1,000 fine. There is no mandatory sentence for the offense — which FITSNews founding editor Will Folks has argued against.
Here is the full news release and arrest warrants from SLED:20210113-NR004_FORMER-LAW-ENFORCEMENT-OFFICER-CHARGED-WITH-ASSAULT-AND-BATTERY-MISCONDUCT-IN-OFFICE-01-13-2021
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