MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – Attorneys for the 70-year-old Manatee County grandmother whose violent confrontation was caught on camera, plan to sue the sheriff’s office.
It happened on Dec. 26 at Barbara Pinkney’s 70th birthday.
Manatee County Sheriff’s Office deputies say they came to serve an arrest warrant to Tevin Turner, Pinkney’s grandson, on violation of probation for carrying a concealed weapon.
Video shot by her grandson’s wife shows her refusing and trying to close the door. It shows a deputy grab the 70-year-old woman’s wrist as she pulls back. She is then tased and taken to the ground hard.
“What he did to me wasn’t right cuz I asked him not come in and he said he was coming in anyway,” said Barbara Pinkney.
In the front yard of Pinkney’s home, her new attorney team explained why they believe Manatee deputies overstepped their boundaries.
“They threw this grandmother on the ground and tased her repeatedly because she says she had the right to the constitution of the United States of America,” said Ben Crump.
Crump warns, if this is allowed to stand unchallenged, then nobody is safe from what he called an unreasonable search.
“As a young black man, I am offended. I am outraged that they would do this to our “shero” here” he said.
The sheriff believes his deputies acted correctly.
“We know we had a lawful right to enter the house. We had a felony VOP warrant for three felonies Mr. Turner committed,” said Manatee County Sheriff Rick Wells.
But Pinkney’s attorneys say Turner wasn’t even there, didn’t escape out the back door and his legal trouble doesn’t have anything to do with tasing a senior citizen.
“We’re asking the Sheriff to stand up. We’re asking him to take leadership, to take ownership. And these officers not just be placed on administrative leave, but they need to be fired” said Michele Rayner-Goolsby.
Rayner-Goolsby will defend Pinkney over her battery and obstruction charges.
The sheriff’s office is conducting an investigation into this tasing incident.
Meanwhile, the deputy who did the tasing has been placed on desk duty.