Cop's Son Turns Himself In After Shocking Video's Release

PHOTO Justin Collison is shown here in a mugshot taken by the Seminole County Sheriff`s Office on Jan. 3, 2010.
Share
Copy

A police lieutenant's son who was allegedly caught on video knocking out a homeless man turned himself in today, nearly a month after the incident occurred.

Justin Collison, 21, arrived at the Seminole County jail in Sanford, Fla., at 8:01 a.m. A warrant had been issued for his arrest charging him with aggravated battery. He paid $4,000 bail and was waiting to be fitted with a monitor before he could be released.

"He is waiting for the GPS monitor to be put on his leg right now," intake clerk at Seminole County Jail Jennifer Litterelle said to ABC News. "I don't know how long that will take, it could be today or tomorrow."

Littterelle told ABC News that the GPS monitor is not a house arrest bracelet and only used to "track his whereabouts" and that Collison is not confined to his home.

The warrant was issued for Collison Dec. 29 of last year after a video revealed him punching a homeless man in the back of the head outside of a bar.

"After I saw the video I was shocked," Sanford Chief of Police Brian Tooley told ABC News. "I was very surprised after watching that video that we did not make an arrest that night."

Tooley said he is disappointed in his department, especially because this case directly involved someone in the department. Collison is the son of Sanford Lt. Chris Collison.

"Since this involved the lieutenant's son, we should have made sure everything was [done] according to the books," Tooley said. "It wasn't handled well at all."

The video shows Collison walk up behind Sherman Ware, 48, punch him in the back of the head and leave him unconscious on the sidewalk.

Ware had to be hospitalized and according to the Orlando Sentinel, he suffered from a broken nose as a result of the attack.

Before Collison's arrest, the victim's sister Tonnetta Foster told ABC affiliate WFTV that Collison was getting special treatment, noting that he had not been charged for several weeks after the incident.

Cop's Son Face Charges

Sanford police initially denied there was special treatment for Collison, but have assigned an internal affairs officer to look into how the case was handled by the officers who initially responded to the call in order to guarantee that they followed all of the proper procedures

"We're handling this case like we would handle any other case," Police Capt. Jerry Hargrett said. "We're not out to protect anybody's child."

The department also said that an internal investigator has been following the case since the incident occurred.

The case has now been turned over to the district attorney, State Attorney Norm Wolfinger, who will decide whether to charge Collison with a crime. Wolfinger meets with the victim next week.

"It depends on what we see once we're done, but you know the ones that obviously come to light in the video perhaps are battery, things like that, perhaps assault, felony battery," Wolfinger said. "It's another terrible incident of a homeless man unfortunately being the victim of an attack."

Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...