Paducah PD release body cam footage of officer-involved incident - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Paducah PD release body cam footage of officer-involved incident at club

(Source: Raycom Media) (Source: Raycom Media)
PADUCAH, KY (KFVS) -

The Paducah Police Department in Kentucky has released body cam footage of an officer-involved incident at a club on Sunday, September 11.

WARNING: Video below does contain language not suitable for all audiences.

According to Police Chief Brandon Barnhill on the police department's Facebook page, at around 1:30 a.m. an officer responded to the Brick House on Boyd Street in response to the club owner's request for assistance in removing some patrons who were allegedly smoking marijuana.

After talking to the owner, the officer helped him make a general statement over the club's sound system.

Chief Barnhill said the context of the announcement was that while he was not looking to arrest anyone, "the patrons did not need to disrespect the owner by smoking marijuana inside."

Some of the people in the club were not happy and police say several patrons were asked to leave or left on their own.

According to the chief, as the officer walked outside he again discouraged the people from disrespecting the owner by allegedly using drugs at the club. They say one man made a loud comment, voicing his displeasure, and that statement included a racial slur.

He said the officer replied, "I hear what you're saying..." then repeating the statement back to him.

As the officer walked away from the man, police say another man, using his cellphone camera, asked the officer to clarify that he just used a racial slur.

Chief Barnhill said the officer acknowledged that he made the comment and the two "get in a back-and-forth" before the officer walked away.

According to Barnhill, a public Facebook video then picks up the story line.

However, he said what is not caught on video is the officer de-escalating the situation with the first man, finding a commonality as veterans, and the officer apologizing to the man. He said the two end with a handshake.

On Monday, after reviewing the body cam footage, the chief said he and his command staff decided to reach out to the Chief's Community Forum. He said this group of African American leaders meets regularly with the community and the department.

He said this meeting was to gain perspective, particularly an African American perspective,

"...we recognized that while the command staff felt that Officer Kimball's approach of repeating the statement that included the slur did not live up to our expectation of professional, we were glad to see that he later explained his intentions to the man, that he apologized and the two ended on a handshake."

According to Chief Barnhill, they recognized that their perspective may be skewed.

He said five members of the group were able to attend the meeting at the police department.

He said while they don't want to speak for the individual members, they feel confident that after watching the body cam video, they unanimously agree that the officer did not appear to make the comment with any malicious or racist intent.

The incident remains under internal review.

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