New body camera video show moment Lincoln Co. deputy punches man during arrest

LINCOLN COUNTY, N.C. — Newly released body camera video from the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office shows the moment that deputies used force on a suspect during a May arrest, resulting in one of the deputies being fired.

On Friday, a judge ruled that the body-worn camera footage be released.

>> In the interest of transparency, Channel 9 has decided to link to the full video clips here. Viewer discretion is advised.

According to the sheriff’s office, deputies responded on May 28 to a road rage incident in the area of NC Highway 73 and Will Link Lane in Iron Station. The investigation then led deputies to Asbury Church Road, where they found Barry Spencer Green, who was allegedly involved in the road rage incident.

When two deputies went to arrest Green, the sheriff’s office said Deputy Tyler Thompson and Sgt. Aldon Sutton used force against him.

In the body camera videos, Thompson can be seen at one point taking Green to the ground and punching him in the face. Then, when Green attempts to sit up, Thompson can be seen punching him again.

A short time later, Thompson can be seen pulling a taser out and directing Green to get on his stomach. After not doing so, Thompson stunned him.

At one point in the video, Sutton was seen speaking with Green’s grandfather before talking to the suspect in the back of a truck. Green then taunted Sutton to the point where Sutton grabbed him by his neck.

The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office conducted an internal investigation, which they say is standard protocol with the use of force. After the investigation, both deputies were suspended.

On Aug. 4, Thompson was fired from the department due to a series of excessive force incidents, authorities said.

The sheriff’s office said it was informed that the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation is investigating the use of force by Thompson and Sutton during the May incident.

Thompson calls himself a whistleblower and thinks the reason he was terminated was for going to the SBI and asking for an investigation.

“I am not the hothead they have given me the reputation of,” Thompson said. “It’s all about doing the right thing.”

Sheriff Bill Beam said Thompson is an aggressor, not a whistleblower. He said Thompson was fired due to a series of excessive force incidents.

“He beat this guy’s eyes shut,” Beam said. “He was counseled, he was written up and the last straw, he was terminated.”

Channel 9 is working to learn additional information on Green’s charges.

Return to this story for updates.

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