- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 21, 2015

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Two former law enforcement officers in Yell County face felony charges for their involvement in breaking a 13-year-old boy’s arm at a juvenile detention center last year.

Former Danville police officer Timothy Spears and former Yell County sheriff’s deputy Michael Spears are each charged with second-degree battery in connection with the March 2014 altercation with the boy that resulted in a severe fracture of his upper arm.

Both officers, who are brothers, have denied any wrongdoing, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (https://bit.ly/1RN3B1N ) reported. State police investigator Ted Jones had determined that neither man entered the cellblock with intent to harm the boy.

But Jones said the injury could have been avoided had Timothy Spears not used a “pain compliance technique” that involved forcing the boy’s arm upward and outward behind his back.

Court records show the boy was ordered to spend 10 days at the juvenile detention center after an altercation at school in which he cursed at a teacher. The exchange of words was a violation of his probation.

Jones wrote in his report that on the night the boy’s arm was broken, he was confined to his cell for “disruptive behavior” when officers approached. The boy had been kicking his door and was angry because another inmate had made comments about his sister.

Special prosecutor Jason Barrett filed the charges last week in Yell County Circuit Court, and said that he believes the evidence supports felony charges against the two men.

An attorney for Timothy Spears said his client denies committing any crime. An attorney for Michael Spears did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment on his behalf.

Both men were fired from their respective agencies and each was released last week on a $2,500 bond. They’re scheduled to appear in court Aug. 4.

Michael Robbins, a lawyer for the boy’s parents, said his clients support Barrett filing the charges.

“It’s attaining one of the goals that my clients wished to see attained. They wanted to bring what they believe was a criminal act to light,” he said.


Information from: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, https://www.arkansasonline.com

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