Deputies Allegedly Choke Inmate For Smiling In His Mugshot

Cierra Bailey
A man claims he was choked by sheriff’s deputies for refusing to stop smiling while his mugshot picture was being taken after he was arrested last summer.

texas officer choke inmate for smiling mugshot

A Texas man is suing the Harris County Sheriff’s office, claiming that he was choked for smiling in his mugshot photo.

Christopher Johnson was arrested in the summer of 2015 on suspicion of drunk driving; however, he had never been convicted of anything other than a traffic ticket prior to his arrest, according to ABC 13.

While officers were booking him, they allegedly scolded him for smiling in his mugshot. One deputy reportedly demanded that Johnson, “Take the picture right” and stop smiling.

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Johnson purportedly responded by telling the officers, “This is how I always take my pictures.”

Johnson’s response may have come across as patronizing to the officers, potentially prompting them to place their hands around his neck and choke him.

The deputy who allegedly did the act claims that Johnson had become uncooperative.

He denies that he gave the deputy a hard time, but regardless, his attitude serves as no excuse for the officer to violate him in that way.

Johnson’s attorneys argue that he suffered pain and mental anguish as a result of the physical force used against him. 

People smile in their mugshot photos quite frequently. While it may seem like the inmate is making a joke of their situation, it is not a punishable offense.

The lawsuit seeks compensation and punitive damages for Johnson on the grounds that the officers involved in the incident violated his civil rights. 

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