Family accuses HPD of excessive force in arrest of Hattiesburg man

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The family of a jailed Hattiesburg man is accusing three Hattiesburg police officers of shocking him with a stun gun while he was handcuffed.

Marcus Hudson, 37, is charged with assault on the three officers on Feb. 12 after he allegedly became combative when they tried to question him about a recent burglary in the area.

"He attacked the officer. He started punching him and kicking him. Then the second officer arrived," said Lieutenant Eric Proulx, HPD Public Information Officer. "When the second officer arrived on the scene he was still being very combative. At one point there were three officers there trying to restrain him and get him into handcuffs. At one point he was even able to get his hand on one of the officers gun."

Herman Smith, the father of Hudson, said his son was walking to his nearby apartment when he was stopped by the officer. He said his son had a previous altercation with police where he had been beaten six weeks earlier.

"If you were stopped six weeks earlier and then six weeks later you are stopped again by Hattiesburg Police and they have beaten you, I would have been afraid to go to them officers after I had been beaten," said Smith.

When brought to the jail police said Hudson continued to be combative, and he was shocked with a stun gun. Smith says his son told him he was shocked while handcuffed.

"Looking at the physical damage that is done, how do you muster up enough strength to violently attack somebody in the lockup," said Smith. "I don't think you can."

Proulx says Hudson has a long history of misdemeanor crimes with many resulting in him being combative with police. Both his father and Proulx confirmed that Hudson suffers from paranoid schizophrenia. Proulx alleges Hudson can become violent when not on his medication.

Smith says he has asked to see the video from the patrol car dash cams and he says he has been denied the opportunity. He also says he was told no video is available from the jail because their cameras are apparently not working. Proulx says the video from the dash cams is being used in the investigation of the incident and could be made available to Smith at a later date.

Proulx also insisted that the current administration at the police department does not tolerate any abuse of authority by their officers.

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