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DeSoto Parish Louisiana Sheriff’s Deputy Admits to Federal Civil Rights Violation by Attacking Detainee: Expected to Receive a Sentence of 2.5 to 3 years in Jail


Consequently, the detainee sustained severe injuries, including a fractured eye socket and nose, among others, requiring hospitalization. Grant had previously admitted guilt to an obstruction charge for falsifying a report about the incident, with the intent of concealing the excessive use of force.




Javarrea Pouncy, a former deputy of the DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Office in Louisiana, aged 30, admitted guilt to violating a detainee's civil rights by employing unjustifiable force while acting under the authority of the law.


“Like any law enforcement officer, the defendant had a duty to protect people in his custody,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “Instead of fulfilling his duty, the defendant abused his authority by beating a detainee who posed no threat to him, leaving the victim broken, bloodied and bruised. The Justice Department is committed to investigating and prosecuting officers who violate the civil and constitutional rights of those in their care.”


“This defendant was an officer of the law who took an oath to serve and protect others, but he did the exact opposite of that,” said U.S. Attorney Brandon B. Brown for the Western District of Louisiana. “This incident was unnecessary and a result of this defendant’s abuse of the law. We take these violations of civil rights of others very seriously and will continue to prosecute those who violate these laws in the Western District of Louisiana.”


“There is never any excuse for a man or woman who takes the oath to serve and protect to do what Pouncy did in this case,” said Special Agent in Charge Lyonel Myrthil of the FBI New Orleans Field Office. “The FBI is committed to uncovering cowards who attempt to hide their acts of violence behind the badge. Justice is finally served in this case.”


According to legal records, on September 27, 2019, while employed as a deputy at the DeSoto Parish jail, Javarrea Pouncy, alongside another deputy named DeMarkes Grant, subjected a detainee to a strip search as part of the intake procedure. Despite the detainee not posing a threat, Pouncy and Grant repeatedly struck him, delivering around 50 blows, including to his head and face. Consequently, the detainee sustained severe injuries, including a fractured eye socket and nose, among others, requiring hospitalization.

Grant had previously admitted guilt to an obstruction charge for falsifying a report about the incident, with the intent of concealing the excessive use of force.


A sentencing session is set for August 7. As per his plea arrangement, Pouncy could face imprisonment for 30 to 37 months. The final sentence will be determined by a federal district court judge, who will consider the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other legal factors.


The FBI's New Orleans Field Office conducted the investigation into this matter.



Back in February, (ACLU) the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the decision of the district court to dismiss a Section 1983 ( Civil action for deprivation of rights) lawsuit filed by Mr. Jarius Brown against deputies of the DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Office. Brown, a Black man who was unlawfully assaulted by officers later charged by the U.S. Department of Justice, brought the action.


The United States District Court for the Western District of Louisiana had dismissed Brown’s claim against Defendants Javarrea Pouncy, John Doe #1, and John Doe #2, citing Louisiana’s one-year residual statute of limitations. Brown contested this decision on appeal, arguing that the district court misapplied the one-year limitation to his Section 1983 claim.


The Fifth Circuit concurred with the lower court, resulting in the dismissal of Brown’s lawsuit. However, the court acknowledged the ongoing challenge in Louisiana and suggested that only the U.S. Supreme Court could provide clarity on how lower courts should address the practical obstacles hindering a victim’s Section 1983 claim.

The ACLU of Louisiana issued a statement subsequent to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) unveiling the indictment of former DeSoto Parish Sheriff's Office (DPSO) deputy Javarrea Pouncy, alongside the corresponding guilty plea of former deputy Demarkes Grant. Both ex-deputies were implicated in the severe assault on Justice Lab client Jarius Brown following his arrest for nonviolent traffic infractions in 2019.


“It is shameful that victims of civil rights violations have no practical recourse against their abusers under civil rights laws that would apply differently had they been a citizen of any state other than Louisiana, Tennessee or Kentucky. The ACLU of Louisiana will continue to challenge the one-year statute of limitations and plans on taking this very issue up to the Supreme Court of the United States.






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