Trial for ex-jailer accused of beating inmate set for Monday

KNOXVILLE - The trial for a former Knox County jailer caught on video kicking a hog-tied inmate is expected to start Monday.

The ex-corrections officer, Nicholas Breeden, is charged with official oppression and assault.

His attorneys have said he was caught in a "fight or flight instinct" when he kicked former inmate Louis Flack in the face in November 2014 after officers attempted to move him to another cell.

However, earlier this month, Knox County Criminal Court Judge Bobby McGee ruled that the defense could not call a doctor as a witness to testify about the jailer's mental state.

Louis Flack was in custody at the Roger D. Wilson Detention Facility on Maloneyville Road in November 2014. Authorities initially arrested him for burglary and aggravated assault, but charges were later dropped.

Corrections officers were trying to transport Flack to a different holding cell, but Flack – who was locked in his cell – refused to stick his hands through a sliding panel in the door so that officers could cuff him.

The guards, in order to extract Flack from the cell, rushed in and beat him, according to video of the incident that was obtained by WBIR 10News.

The video shows five men storming the cell with two more watching from the door’s threshold. As Flack appeared to take a swing at one of them, the officers tackled him to the ground, and at least four started throwing punches.

The video, taken from a handheld camera, shows Breeden striking Flack repeatedly on the head and body as another officer knees him. Seconds after he’s face-down on the floor, one officer begins yelling “Give me your hands!” as the two men continue hitting Flack.

The officers quickly handcuff Flack and twist his legs behind him so that they are in a reverse yoga position. While on his stomach, Flack tells one of the officers that he has to visit his doctor because he’s scheduled for "execution."

Breeden then kicks Flack in the face.

Two months after the beating, Knox County Sheriff Jimmy "J.J." Jones fired Breeden and suspended a number of others involved.

The county settled with Flack for $200,000.

(© 2016 WBIR)


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