Two men are filing a federal civil rights lawsuit against a Mississippi sheriff's department after deputies allegedly waterboarded them with milk, attempted to assault them with a sex toy, and shot one of them in the mouth.
According to the Associated Press, Michael Corey Jenkins and Eddie Terrell Parker are alleging that the Rankin County Sheriff's Department has a pattern of using excessive force against Black people following their January encounter with deputies.
Jenkins was shot in the mouth on the night of January 26 after six white Rankin County deputies suddenly entered Parker's home, according to the men. The men said deputies repeatedly shocked them with stun guns and forced them to lie on their backs while milk was poured over their faces.
According to the men, deputies also attempted to assault them with a sex toy they found while searching Parker's home. At one point during the encounter, Jenkins said a deputy put a gun in his mouth and opened fire.
Deputies said they raided the home after receiving reports of drug activity. Jenkins was charged with drug possession and aggravated assault on a police officer. Parker faced two misdemeanor charges including possession of paraphernalia and disorderly conduct.
It's unclear whether deputies had a warrant to search the home. The lawsuit will accuse deputies of illegal entry.
There's no body camera footage of the incident, but the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation has confirmed that a deputy shot Jenkins. He was hospitalized for weeks with a lacerated tongue and broken jaw.
The deputy hasn't been identified by the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation. Parker and attorneys Malik Shabazz and Trent Walker claim it was Deputy Hunter Elward.
The men are seeking $400 million in compensatory and punitive damages.
“If there ever were a case where punitive damages needed to be levied against police officers, this is the case,” Shabazz said in a statement. “This incredible, nasty, violent ordeal exposes that Rankin County deputies and the Department have had a long pattern and practice of deadly excessive force and hate crimes against its African American citizens.”
According to AP, Rankin County Sheriff’s Department deputies have been involved in at least four violent encounters with Black men since 2019. The Department of Justice is also conducting a civil rights probe into the encounter between Jenkins, Parker, and Rankin County deputies.
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