By T. Scott Boatright
Police body cam video obtained and released by the Associated Press on Wednesday shows that Ronald Greene, a Black man who died after a pursuit by Louisiana State Police in Union Parish in 2019, can be heard apologizing to officers and telling them he was scared before he was tased, dragged and kicked.
Green was later pronounced dead.
The 2019 arrest of Greene in Union Parish not far outside Monroe is the subject of a federal civil rights investigation and reportedly has been immersed in secrecy and accusations of a cover-up
State Troopers reportedly at first told Greene’s family that he died on impact after his vehicle crashed into a tree during the chase.
According to multiple reports, the LSP later released a one-page statement saying that Greene struggled with troopers and died on his way to the hospital.
John Belton, 3rd District Attorney overseeing both Lincoln and Union parishes, issued a statement concerning the situation Wednesday evening.
“It is of the utmost importance that the Ronald Greene family and our community, as a whole, be provided complete and truthful answers about what happened to him,” Belton wrote.
“For our justice system to properly function, citizens must have trust and confidence in the justice process. To ensure an independent investigation into the death of Mr. Greene, on the day I received the report from the Louisiana State Police, I asked the United States Department of Justice to conduct an independent review of the circumstances surrounding his death, including whether any criminal or civil rights violations occurred.
“To date, the federal investigation is ongoing. Ethically, I am prevented from making any extrajudicial comments while this matter is under investigation. Furthermore, the United States Attorney for the Western District of Louisiana has asked that I make no comments regarding the merits and investigation of the case. My office will await the conclusion of the federal investigation before making any further comment or decisions in this case.”