Beating case against ex-officer stalled over victim's lawyer

The case against a former white police officer who beat an unarmed black pedestrian in North Carolina has stalled because of the pedestrian's criminal charges in a separate case.

Buncombe County District Attorney Todd Williams tells the Asheville Citizen-Times he can't talk to Johnnie Rush until Rush hires a lawyer to represent him on drug charges from January. Williams is personally handling the case of former Asheville police officer Chris Hickman, who is charged with felony strangulation.

The newspaper published leaked body-camera video in March showing Hickman shock Rush with a stun gun and then choke and strike him while holding him on the ground in 2017.

Williams says it would be unethical to talk to Rush until Rush hires a lawyer. Rush declined to say Wednesday whether he had done so.


Information from: The Asheville Citizen-Times,