Sheriff's Deputy Punches Spitter In The Mouth

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When Cannon County Sheriff's deputies Matt Parsley and Brandon Gullett attempted to serve warrants on a Cannon County man late Monday night of this week, they likely encountered more of problem than they anticipated.

What transpired after their arrival at the suspect's residence included physical and verbal confrontations between the deputies and the man being served along with members of his family, and charges of assault and resisting arrest.

Following are the versions of the events as given by the two Cannon County deputies involved. They are unedited with the exception of the last word in the second report, which some readers may find offensive.

Deputy Matt Parsley's Narrative Of Incident:

"On July 19th 2010, I Deputy Parsley was directed by Cannon County Dispatch that I needed to go to 687 Young Hollow Road and attempt to serve a warrant on Eric Burton for Violation of Probation from Rutherford County and also an ex-parte Order of Protection from Cannon County.

Upon arrival I spoke with a woman, identified as Carmela Burton, who stated that Mr. Eric Burton was not at the residence. Deputy Gullett had went to the rear of the residence, while I was talking with the lady, I overheard Deputy Gullett ask for assistance.

As I came around the rear of the residence I seen Deputy Gullett with Eric Burton in restraints and an older male subject in Deputy Gulletts face. As I made contact with all the parties, the older male subject calmed downed and Deputy Gullett began to take the Eric Burton subject in restraints to his car.

While at my patrol unit, Eric Burton was being placed in the patrol unit by Deputy Gullett, Eric Burton turned around and spat on Deputy Gullett. At that time Deputy Gullett punched Eric Burton in the mouth. Then Eric Burton began to kick Deputy Gullett. Both Deputy Gullett and Eric Burton began to fight. I then noticed the older male subject, identified as Mike Burton, jump off the porch and run towards us. Mr. Mike Burton slipped and fell on some rocks while running towards us.

This slip by Mr. Mike Burton gave me time to get closer to him, while at this time Deputy Gullett and Eric Burton began to fight. I could hear Deputy Gullett advising Mr. Eric Burton to stop fighting. While Deputy Gullett and Eric Burton were fighting I was keeping Mike Burton, Carmela Burton and a young girl also at the residence from charging Deputy Gullett.

I also contacted Cannon County Dispatch and advised them that backup was needed at the scene. I finally got both Mike and Carmela Burton to calm down and got Deputy Gulletts keys to unlock his car. At this time Mike Burton began to charge Deputy Gullett, and Deputy Gullett drew his service weapon and advised Mr. Mike Burton to stop. Mr. Mike Burton did stop and ran back to the house.

At this time, I got back to Deputy Gullett and assisted getting Eric Burton back to my patrol unit before Mike Burton came back outside. At this time we got Eric Burton to my patrol unit and left the scene. Deputy Gullett then went to Stones River Emergency Room for blood test to be ran.

While leaving the residence Deputy Brandon Mims was dispatched to 687 Young Hollow Road in reference to police harrassment."

Deputy Brandon Gullett's Narrative Of Incident:

"On July 20, 2010 I Deputy Brandon Gullett along with Deputy Matt Parsley went to 687 Young Hollow Road to serve a Violation of Probation Warrant on Eric Michael Burton.

Upon arrival we was met by a female at the front porch who stated she was going to get the mother. I then after hearing a noise from the rear of the residence went to the back of the house and made contact with a white male known as Eric Michael Burton exiting the rear door.

I then drew my service weapon on him and ordered him to the ground. He then turned and walked back toward the rear door of the residence. I then ordered him to get on the ground and to stop, which he refused to and I wasn't going to let him get back into the residence for fear of my safety.

I then put my service weapon up and pulled out my baton and administered one hit to the common peronial or to the side of his leg this dropped him down to one leg. I then went to place him in custody, when his father Michael James Burton came charging out the rear door in an aggressive manor yelling starting why did I hit his son.

I then advised the father to calm down and get out of my face. I then advised Deputy Matt Parsley to come around to the rear of the residence since I had two on one. Once Deputy Matt Parsley arrived at the rear of the residence the father calmed down and I got Mr. Eric Burton into custody.

I was then asked by the father if he could get his son some shoes. I then advised yes and myself and Matt Parsley walked Eric to the rear of his patrol unit.

Once at the patrol unit Eric became very violent and refused to get into the patrol unit. He then turned around and spit in my face. I then in return hit him in the mouth. Once this took place he started to kick me and I then climbed in the rear of the patrol unit and dragged him back out of the car.

Once out of the car he was still violent and kicking and trying to bite me. I then got Eric in a choke hold  and his father began to charge at me from the front yard. I then while holding Eric down with my left arm drew my service weapon on his father and advised I would shoot him if he came any further. He then stopped and turned and went back into the residence.

Deputy Parsley had contacted the city for backup and then stated that we needed to get Eric into a patrol unit and get out of here. At this time we got Eric up off the ground and walked him to the rear of Deputy Matt Parsley's patrol unit and transported him to Cannon County Jail.

I then went to the Stones River Emergency Room for a blood test since the subject spit in my face. Mr. Eric Burton was charged with Aggravated Assault and Resisting Arrest.

Also stated by Mr. Burton was that he had been spitting in our food at DJ's Restaurant for several months and he also stated he would see me in the street and that the next time he would beat my ass cause I wouldn't have some one with me. The father Michael James Burton also stated that he knew who I was and that I was nothing but a piece of sh..."

According to records filed with the Cannon County Circuit Court Clerk's Office, Eric Michael Burton was released following his arrest on $17,000 bond. His first court date is set for September 7.

A Google search by the Cannon Courier of the address "687 Young Hollow Road, 37190" returned information that an Eric Michael Burton, age 19, of that address was arrested by the Red Bank Police Department on March 28 of this year on charges of criminal impersonation, vandalism/malicious mischief and public intoxication.

The Cannon Courier has been informed by the sheriff's department that the incident is still under investigation. The Cannon Courier inquired as to whether Eric Michael Burton or members of his family have filed an incident report with the sheriff's department alleging improper conduct on the part of either Gullett and/or Parsley during the arrest. The department said no such complaint has been made.
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