Jury says officers’ actions justified in Tario Anderson arrest

GREENVILLE, SC (WSPA) – The trial for the officers in the Tario Anderson wrapped up Wednesday afternoon, after the federal jury deliberated for 75 minutes.

Jurors were looking at the claim that officers used unconstitutional use of force as well as intentional affliction and metal distress on his mother, Caroline Anderson.

The jury ruled in favor of the police officers on both of the cases.

Tario Anderson was found incompetent to testify.

“The Anderson family was sorely disappointed at the outcome of the verdict as we were as well, and we don’t think it was the right verdict,” said the family, Ernest Nelson Irby II.

Irby says the team was happy to see a police misconduct case get as far as it did.

“Very few of these cases ever see the light of day because typically internal affairs or other law enforcement divisions serve as kind of the overseers,” Irby said.

Officers have qualified immunity which protects them if they make a mistake while acting in good faith.

“It’s a way to negate individual responsibility when authority is abused,” Irby said.

Irby says if the good thing that came out of the case was the awareness brought to mental illness.

Greenville officers were on Sullivan Street investigating reports of shots fired when they saw Tario Anderson on December 24, 3014.

Police say they told him to stop and he ignored their commands and ran away.

Officers tased him twice and arrested him.

The solicitor says the officers reasonably believed Anderson may have been the armed suspect they were looking for and did what they had to – to stop a presumed suspect from getting away.

Greenville Police Chief Ken Miller denied his officers stopped Anderson because of racial profiling.

Miller also asked DSS to launch an investigation into Anderson’s welfare, because he said he is concerned that such a vulnerable adult was being allowed to walk alone and night and why he was carrying nearly $2000 in cash.

It’s also the second time law enforcement stopped Anderson walking that street late at night with a large amount of cash on him. He wasn’t arrested then.\

The family is deciding if they want to appeal the ruling on the circuit court level.

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