Newly released surveillance video recorded in a Tennessee jail revealed three deputies surrounding a restrained teenager while repeatedly using a stun gun to torture him. After filing a formal complaint, the teen sued the department and the three officers who have been placed on administrative duty pending the investigation.
On November 5, surveillance video captured Cheatham County Deputies Mark Bryant, Jeff Key, and Josh Marriott standing over 18-year-old Jordan Norris who had been strapped to a restraint chair. According to the video and subsequent lawsuit, Marriot held the teen’s mouth shut with a rag as Bryant drove the stun gun into his chest.
“Are you ready?” Bryant asked while aiming the stun gun beneath Norris’ heart and pressing it against his torso. “Would you like to comply?”
With a rag forced over his mouth, the teen’s response was inaudible.
“No, you won’t,” Bryant replied.
As Norris attempted to speak again, Bryant fired the stun gun directly into his torso for several seconds. Shortly afterwards, Bryant repeatedly drove his stun gun into the teen’s left leg as Norris involuntarily convulsed with his eyes bulging out in pain.
“Stop resisting,” one of the deputies ordered despite the fact that Norris was clearly restrained and unable to resist. Someone off-camera could be heard laughing in the background.
“You don’t like it, do you?” a deputy asked as Bryant continued using his stun gun for no justifiable reason.
Although Norris appeared distressed and in physical agony, Bryant incessantly fired his stun gun into the teen’s left leg before switching to his right leg. The surveillance camera recorded Bryant pulling the trigger four times while stunning Norris for at least 50 seconds.
“I’ll keep on doing that until I run out of batteries,” Bryant sadistically warned him.
Norris had been arrested two days earlier and charged with felony possession of marijuana for resale, possession of drug paraphernalia, theft under $500, and five counts of possession of a prohibited weapon. Approximately 48 hours later, he was placed on suicide watch after staff found him banging his head against his cell door while suffering from a mental health episode.
Strapped to the restraint chair for nearly three hours, Norris reportedly suffered more than 40 pairs of burn marks across his torso and limbs caused by the prongs on Bryant’s stun gun. According to the video, no staff members or other deputies attempted to stop Bryant from blatantly violating Norris’ constitutional rights by imposing cruel and unusual punishment against the restrained teen.
The deputies issued two more Use of Force Reports later that night after repeatedly using the stun gun against Norris while moving him from the restraint chair to a jail transport vehicle assigned to drive him to the hospital. Including photographs of his numerous wounds, the lawsuit filed by Norris alleges that most of the burn marks across his body were not accounted for by the Use of Force Reports or the jail surveillance video.
After reviewing the footage, Cheatham County Sheriff Mike Breedlove issued a statement: “As sheriff, I want our citizens to know that any inappropriate behavior that may have violated an individual’s rights will not be tolerated. I have placed the employees involved on administrative leave while the investigation is conducted. We will work closely and cooperatively with the TBI [Tennessee Bureau of Investigation] and district attorney’s office to ensure all facts are provided and all angles of this incident are thoroughly investigated.”