FORNEY, Texas — A family is calling for the termination of a Kaufman County Sheriff's Office deputy after he was captured in a now-viral video using a control technique on an 18-year-old female who police had received 911 calls of an apparent suicidal individual running into traffic.
The Kaufman County Sheriff's Office defended the control technique, in a statement yesterday, as being a common ju-jitsu technique taught by the department to control a subject's lower body without impeding breathing and preventing injury to both parties.
The incident began Tuesday afternoon in the area of Valley View Road and Ranch Road, just north of the Forney city limits, after police received several 911 calls of a female who appeared to be purposefully lunging into traffic in an apparent suicidal attempt — one 911 caller reporting the female said she wanted to be run over.
A 911 caller followed the female into the Deerfield Heights neighborhood in Forney, Texas, where Kaufman County Sheriff's Office Deputy Martin was able to locate the female.
"In an effort to prevent the female from running into traffic or sustaining an injury, Deputy Martin executed a control technique taught by the Kaufman County Sheriff's Office," read, in part, the statement from the sheriff's office. "A Top Mount is commonly used in Ju Jit Su and allows the deputy to control the lower body without impeding breathing and prevents injury to both parties."
The sheriff's office says, while Deputy Martin was awaiting assistance from other deputies, family members arrived at the scene, encircled him, and threatened him.
The female's mother, Antanique Ray, defended those actions during a press conference yesterday hosted by the Dallas-based Next Generation Action Network at the Kaufman County Law Enforcement — saying her daughter was calling out to her that she couldn't breath and that she had never seen a police officer use that type of control technique.
As the female was handcuffed, stood up, and being escorted to a deputy's vehicle for transport to a mental health facility for an evaluation, the sheriff's office says Ray insisted her daughter's handcuffs be loosened and allegedly struck Deputy Martin.
Ray, in turn, was arrested and charged with assault on a public servant, interference with public duties, and two outstanding warrants.
Deputy Martin has since been placed on administrative leave pending an Internal Affairs Investigation, the sheriff's office says, in accordance with its policies.
"The Kaufman County Sheriff's Office remains committed to transparency and cooperation with our community," concluded the sheriff's office statement. "Any complaint against this department is taken with the seriousness it deserves and will be followed with a complete and thorough investigation."
The department released two 911 calls and Deputy Martin's body-worn camera video on Thursday, see above for the attached video.