Lawsuit accuses McCracken County deputy of excessive use of force during arrest of pregnant woman

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A McCracken County Sheriff's Office deputy is at the center of a lawsuit involving two Black women claiming excessive use of force.

Local 6 was set bodycam video of the incident, which happened on Feb. 1.

The lawsuit filed by Elayshia Boey and Vanessa Jenkins claims Deputy Jon T. Hayden (no relation Graves County Sheriff Jon Hayden) face-planted Boey, who was visibly pregnant, into his service vehicle. The suit says Hayden had pulled the 24-year-old Boey and Jenkins, Boey's mother, over for a traffic stop.

Bodycam video sent to Local 6 by attorneys representing Boey and Jenkins shows Hayden pull the women over for a traffic stop before taking the mother and daughter into custody.

The legal complaint claims Hayden "grabbed Boey by the arms and hurled her head-first into his service vehicle,” while Boey was six months pregnant. It goes on to claim the impact caused a "severe wound" on Boey's forehead.

Hayden's bodycam was activated during the incident, but the lawsuit claims he wrongfully removed it before slamming Boey into the service vehicle.

The suit claims Hayden refused to get medical treatment for Boey at the scene, instead taking her directly to jail. "Only after a jail nurse refused to allow Boey to be booked, given her injuries and her pregnancy, did Hayden finally take Boey to an emergency room," the suit claims.

The women's attorneys say the video speaks for itself.

Attorney James Russell says the arrest has harmed Boey and Jenkins beyond the night of Feb. 1.

"Both Miss Jenkins and Miss Boey are facing felony charges as a result of the incidents that occur that night and if convicted they could be facing substantial actual prison time one to five years. Obviously that in and of itself is terrifying to them," Russell says. "Beyond that, this whole entire incident has disrupted their lives."

The lawsuit claims Boey has a permanent and "disfiguring" scar on her forehead from the injury sustained during the arrest, and that she and Jenkins "have to live with the continued psychological trauma and pain of Deputy Hayden’s dehumanizing assault." The suit also claims the charges filed against the two women are fabricated.

Local 6 also spoke with Sheriff Ryan Norman about the incident. He stands by his deputy.

"He's a young deputy. He's proactive. He's good at his job," said Norman.

He claims there's more to this case than what the video reveals.

"Anytime somebody doesn't want to be placed in handcuffs or go to jail, it's not going to look pretty," said Norman. "The investigation shows that no policies or procedures were broken, and we do that review process to ensure we're providing the service to the community that the community deserves and training deputies how they need to be trained," Norman says.

Norman says the sheriff's office will fight the lawsuit, and the office's stance is that no policies or procedures were broken.

It will be a few months before the case goes to court.

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