A FEDERAL JURY FINDS BALTIMORE CITY POLICE OFFICER DUANE WILLIAMS LIABLE FOR $100,000 FOR ASSAULTING A 14 YEAR OLD CHILD WITH MENTAL HEALTH CHALLENGES

The Plaintiff, Latoya Coner, on behalf of her minor son (“S.M.”), sued Former Baltimore City Police Officers Duane Earl Williams, Jr., and others, for an unprovoked attack at a Baltimore City Hospital.

On January 14, 2015, Baltimore City Police Officers escorted a handcuffed S.M., 14 years old at the time, to Sinai Hospital, in Baltimore for a mental health evaluation, based on allegations that he had assaulted a teacher, and comporting himself in an aggressive & unruly manner. S.M., was allegedly combative, and also disrespectful to hospital personnel. The jury found that Former Officer Williams struck S.M. 10 to 15 times, resulting in him loosing hearing in his left ear, while S.M. was handcuffed to a hospital bed. The jury found that after slapping the teen more than a dozen of times, Former Officer Williams informed hospital personnel that they would not have any more trouble from S.M.

Former Officer Williams was subsequently indicted and convicted on September 26, 2016 of Assault in the Second Degree and Misconduct in Office. He received a suspended 10-year sentence and is on probation until September 26, 2019.

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Former Officer Williams beating left the teen with permanent damage to his ear resulting in him having wear a hearing aid.  On July 11, 2019, the Jury returned a verdict of $100,000. This amount will increase once attorneys’ A. Dwight Pettit and Latoya Francis-Williams, files their Motion for Attorneys Fees and cost.

Former Officer Williams is attempting to atone for the beating of S.M., by becoming a motivational and inspirational speaker to at-risk youth. According to his website, “he is a mentor, activist and coach who has dedicated himself to the youth with empowering them spiritually and naturally. Duane is very passionate about healthy development for the youth to prepare them for their future and equipping them with the tools to succeed”.

This verdict should serve as a continued reminder that no one is above the law.  Baltimore Juries are no longer allowing Police Officers who violate its citizens rights behavior to go unchecked. On August 9, 2019, another former Baltimore City Police Officer, Arthur Williams, was sentenced to 9 months in prison, for the unprovoked assault on an African american male.

Family obtains a Protective Order Against Off Duty Baltimore City Police Officer Damond Durant for brandishing a gun and harassment.

From WBAL Baltimore

View Full Story also at    WBAL11 

An encounter between a Howard County teenager and an off-duty Baltimore City police officer has led to a peace order against the officer.

Jawone Nicholson, 16, and a friend were waiting in a carpool area in their Columbia neighborhood Friday when a man approached them and started asking questions.

Nicholson said they walked toward the man when he made a taunting statement.

“And he pulls his gun out of his jacket pocket, held it right here. It wasn’t in a holster, it was outside the holster, and me and my homeboy put our hands up and started walking through there, and I called my grandmother,” Nicholson said.

Nicholson’s mother, Erica Hamlett, then encountered the man and learned he was a police officer.

“He then hollers out “Baltimore City.’ So we are all looking at each other like, what does that mean?” Hamlett said. “And he says, ‘I’m a Baltimore City police officer.’ So still my question is, why did you pull a gun on my son?”

Howard County police officers arrived, and video shows the officers removing the gun.

The city officer is Damond Durant, who lives half a block away. In a police report, he said, “The subjects then became confrontational. He felt threatened, so he removed his concealed firearm from its holster and positioned it in the low, ready position.”

Nicholson denied being threatening or saying anything that might be seen as threatening.

Durant told Howard County police that he didn’t have time to identify himself as a police officer.

Hamlett said her son was rattled by the encounter.

“He didn’t say he witnessed them committing a crime or there was illegal activity going on. Why did you pull your gun on my son?” Hamlett said.

Nicholson provided Howard County police with a written statement. Durant refused to give one, according to the police report.

The family got a temporary peace order against Durant. They go back to court Monday.

In 2013, Durant broke a man’s jaw during an arrest, resulting in a $55,000 payment to the man by the city. Durant is assigned to the division that helps oversee the consent decree.