Sterling family attorneys say 2014 complaint shows city knew Salamoni was “out of control”

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BATON ROUGE, La. (KTAL/WVLA) – Attorneys representing the family of Alton Sterling say a 2014 incident report shows the city of Baton Rouge was aware of Officer Blane Salamone’s behavior long before his fatal encounter with Sterling in July 2016 and failed to take action.

“Blane Salamoni was an out of control officer and his supervisors, the higher-ups in the Baton Rouge Police Department knew about it they allowed him to police this city and we are legally now connecting the dots,” said Sterling family attorney L. Chris Stewart said. “The city knew and the city has to be held responsible for his actions.”

Stewart’s comments in the news conference came after hearing Monday in the family’s wrongful death suit in which Stewart said the judge ordered the city to turn over Salamoni’s pre-employment psychiatric evaluations used in hiring Salamoni. However, the judge has delayed the order pending appeals. If and when they are released, Stewart said they will show what Baton Rouge Police Chief Murphy Paul said last week, which was that “that he never should have been hired.”

Chief Paul made that statement Thursday in an apology to Sterling’s family following the announcement that Salamoni will not work again with the Baton Rouge Police Department. Instead, Salamoni was allowed to resign and Chief Paul said he would never work for the Baton Rouge Police Department again.

The 2014 incident report released by Sterling family attorneys Monday was filed in October 2014 by an EMS worker two years before Salamoni fired the shot that killed Alton Sterling outside the Triple S Mart. In it, the EMS worker claims Salamoni “turned away EMS from going to check out a patient who had just been shot.”

According to the report, Salamoni had indicated the victim was already deceased, but when medical officials went to check on the body, he was breathing and had a pulse. When the EMS workers tried resuscitation they were too late, “they had been delayed too long,” said Stewart. The EMS worker’s report claims Salamoni began cursing and yelling at her when she commented on the importance of always checking for a pulse. The shooting victim died at the scene.

“It’s a very graphic report, she talks about how Officer Salamoni is out here treating the victim like a common thug, a dog,” Stewart said, citing the incident report. “She is on record saying Officer Salamoni was rude, demeaning, unprofessional, provoking, and seemed disturbed assuming because we were trying to stabilize and resuscitate the patient. He displayed no regard for the human being that was lying, dying in the roadway.”

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