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Video: Off-Duty Cop Fired After Assaulting Soldier Who Denied His Advances

An off-duty Richland County deputy was arrested in South Carolina last week, after cell-phone video revealed his attempts to violently arrest a female soldier for allegedly arguing with him at a local restaurant.

According to the police report, 49-year-old deputy Paul Derrick began arguing with a distraught 23-year-old Brittany Ball after his attempts to initiate a conversation with the soldier were ignored. Derrick, who was not in police uniform, was also drinking at the time of the incident. – Columbia, South Carolina |

According to witnesses, Derrick left the restaurant and returned after obtaining his badge, firearm and handcuffs from his vehicle. Derrick then grabbed Ball before violently handcuffing her arms behind her back, screaming “soldier stand up,” as the woman struggled to move.

Steven Hughes, a bar patron sitting across the patio, immediately pulled out his cell phone camera in an attempt to document the deteriorating situation.

“I said, ‘I’m going to start videoing this, because I think something is about to get out of hand and about the time I got my video out, he had her turned around and was putting her in handcuffs. I mean she never yelled at him. She never resisted. She was as calm as she could be,” Hughes told WIS News.

Throughout the video Derrick can be seen pulling the woman’s arms, even saying, “This is how Marines deal with soldiers,” before slamming the woman’s head into a metal table.

Astonished by Derrick’s behavior, calls began pouring into 911 as restaurant management attempted to help the woman. Derrick continually demanded the management “step away” as the woman gasped for air. Amazingly, the deputy even goes on to order other customers to leave the patio.

“At an establishment like that if the management hasn’t asked you to leave, then you as a customer can’t ask somebody to leave,” said Hughes. “You have to go get management. That’s the whole point of having a business is letting management handle it.”

As Columbia police arrived on scene, Hughes immediately presented officers with the captured cell phone video while Derrick attempted to defend his actions.

“He watched maybe the first 30 seconds of it. And when he heard the Marine-Army comment he said, ‘Alright, things just changed. Arrest him, 10-37, and release her.’ And that’s when I said, ‘Sir, I know it’s hard, but that’s the right thing,'” said Hughes.

After being placed on administrative leave without pay, Derrick was later fired and charged with assault.

Full video of the incident:

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About Mikael Thalen

Mikael Thalen is an investigative journalist covering foreign policy, information security and digital surveillance. His reports have been cited by sites such as the New York Times, Computerworld, International Business Times and the Drudge Report. How to contact Mikael securely:

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  1. Why wasn't he charged with assault?

  2. Because he's a man with an OVERINFLATED ego and the MEN with their overinflated egos didn't charge him. Sh*ts me!!!

    • He certainly MUST have an overinflated ego that this young lady popped, but he WAS charged the same night he was arrested. The report is wrong.

  3. Karen, he wasn’t charged because of the Police Union.

    it’s the Just-us system now, haven’t you heard?

    She can take this tape to the DA and have him charged with assault and battery on a female (SC law) and illegal detention (or kidnapping).

    Then she needs to file civil charges to assure this jackbooted thug never works in law enforcement again!

    • There is no union in south Carolina. And yes, he was arrested on the spot and charged with assault and battery (although I agree that kidnapping should be included, and it might be before it's over with). I also agree that she should file civil charges. As for the "just us" system, as an officer myself, I'm embarrassed by this drunken goon's actions and it amazes me that he was ever an officer.

  4. "At this time it appears Derrick will not be charged for assaulting and illegally detaining the female."


    • The report is wrong. He WAS arrested on the spot and he WAS charged. He deserves jail time when convicted. Gotta love the "accuracy" of the main stream media.

  5. “At this time it appears Derrick will not be charged for assaulting and illegally detaining the female.”

    Police has immunity. They can assault, commit battery, murder, grope, sexually harass and rape. The worst thing happen to them is losing their jobs (and they get to keep their lifetime pension).

    • Wow, that's a bold faced lie. Not only do they NOT have immunity unless specifically qualified by the court, Derrick WAS charged, and I don't know of a single officer in my profession who doesn't believe he deserved it. He represents a less-than-reputable half of a percent of an otherwise honorable profession.

      • Bullshiz, you're not an officer; because if you were, you wouldn't have time to post on this log. You'd be too busy trimming your mustache and searching for other people to hassle. This is what happens when D and C level high-school graduates have no options….they become cops. And they're angry that they have been rebuffed by more civilized, motivated, successful and beautiful people so they take it out on the general public.

  6. This is NOT how Marines treat Soldiers! If this individual has served in the Corps, then he needs to be ashamed of himself. Soldiers are our brothers and sisters in arms. We serve the same country, the same flag, and the same constitution.

    • All war criminal mercenaries together obeying any order, killing civilians, invading countries. Derp.

    • to all, The saddest part is not the off duties officer's actions but the fact that no one did anything to interfere or delay or stop this inanity. Merely standing back and filming it is unacceptable.

    • Your constitution is in tatters.
      Time for you all to wake up and see it.

  7. "Honorable profession"…spare us. That's why you all stand next to a soccer moms car with your hands on your pistol, even after you determined she wasn't a threat, and was only speeding. F*** your profession, scumbags.

    • “That’s why you all stand next to a soccer moms car with your hands on your pistol, even after you determined she wasn’t a threat, and was only speeding.”

      –You say “you all.” How completely encompassing. It may occur that way where “you” are, but I don’t keep a situation ratcheted up when I determine there is not need for it. Neither do the people who work for me, because they know the standard I require.

      “F*** your profession, scumbags.”

      –And still, we’ll come when you call.

      • It's your JOB to come when we call. And I understand it must be frustrating to be a good cop and judged by the actions of others, but perhaps your scorn should be directed not at the poster above but at your fellow officers who day in and sat out abuse their power and abuse the people who pay their salary (us, the public). I'm a law abiding woman (white by the way, i can't imagine how bad black men in particular have it) and have been mistreated by cops several times, some of it so unbelievable you wouldn't probably wouldn't even believe me if I told you. Here in south Florida even middle aged professionals at my work place talk about how much they hate cops and everyone has a story of some cop being completely out of line with them, or worse. I would like it if good cops like you would spend more energy putting your crooked comrades in their place rather than lamenting on how the public judges you.

        • My agency little of this kind of problem, only having 50 officers. I don't have much opportunity to deal with crooked cops, because my chief doesn't stand for it and that good leadership trickles down. We actually have a department that my city is proud of. But it happens, I have dealt with it. In 15 years, my statements resulted in the termination of 3 officers and voluntary departures of two others, and several suspensions/demotions. On the street, I've arrested three police officers (none from my own department, but I would if necessary)– they aren't exempt. The dirtbag this article talks about is in the next county over, so this strikes close to home for me. I'd have given my left foot to have been the one to arrest him for his conduct here.

          I'm truly sorry that you've had bad dealings with police (and honestly, we joke here about how some officer is always making the news in Florida for being dirty, stupid, or both), but please keep in mind that this story isn't just about a bad deputy (who was actually just a reserve deputy, an unpaid volunteer), but it's also about the good officer who came and did the right thing in spite of who was involved.

          • True, it is. Might I suggest the fellow officers in the department and counties over apply pressure to the department head to do the right thing and charge this person, as any one else would have charges against them. It is the lack of charges that are giving the police a bad name.

            BTW, Bravo to you for standing up for the law when you see others in your brethren breaking them.

          • Well, part of the problem is not charging them. Unfortunately, we see this over and over throughout the country.

          • Another unfortunate aspect is that the media gets this stuff wrong so often it isn't funny. And what makes me wonder about if they purposefully got it wrong just to fit an agenda is that they always seem to make their errors in the areas that would either mitigate an officer's actions or justify them. In this case, the error is not the deputy's bad actions (that part is dead on the money). The error is that the Columbia PD officer who arrested the deputy charged him with assault from the very beginning. Heck, the sheriff who fired him has even offered his assistance in prosecution. It was published in the very first local news station that aired the report (and our local stations treat us fair), but oddly enough when the story goes national, that fact gets omitted and it looks like the deputy is getting special treatment.

  8. Dig deep and imagine what would of happened if she was Black.

  9. Dig deep and imagine what would have happened if she was Black. I wonder how many people this guy has wronged in the name of the law.

    • I don't know, but I can make this one promise to you. If I had been the Columbia PD officer that had shown up after this drunken twit did what he did, this outcome would have been the same. He would have gone to jail. We all are members of the same race… the human race.

    • Your second sentence is what I wonder about too, but it's not right to look for a reason to bring race into it. You should save that for a place where it really is a factor.

  10. is it any wonder cops are hated by the majority?……my late brother in-law was a deputy sheriff and when he started drinking his tongue got loose and he admitted that he and his ilk were thugs with badges …i know they have stressful jobs but enough is enough…..someone there should have busted a chair over that punks head.

    • Just please remember we aren't all like that. However, from what I've heard about other places, when there is corruption, it often runs in packs.

    • The problem is that the sheriff or higher authority allowed them to be thugs with badges. Not all Chiefs or Sheriffs are like that. Yes, there are a lot of bad ones out there. I'm a violent crime survivor courtesy of a very bad deputy. Fortunately I have worked with & had family who were cops. One was a bad guy the others were very good & cared about the people in their communities.

      It's important for communities to support the good cops & apply pressure from on high to rid the ranks of the bad ones

    • "someone there should have busted a chair over that punks head."

      I would have. And more. I do not allow ladies to be treated like that.
      If this guy were in uniform and sober it would be a different situation.
      But this guy was out of control and needed to be put down.
      He may think he's a cop but he is not a Roman Centurion. They are citizens just as we are and need to comport themselves accordingly.

  11. To Be Fair, it looks like his sheriff wants him prosecuted!

    “First it made me angry, then it made me sick and disgusted. There is no excuse,” Lott said when he saw the video.

    He said Derrick told investigators he was assisting with a situation with an intoxicated person, but the sheriff said Derrick’s tactics and language were unacceptable.

    He also plans to keep Derrick out of Law Enforcement anywhere!

    Good to see the Police doing the right thing!

    • Thank heavens. The first report I read said the Sheriff backed this man at first. I fervently hope that this man is never allowed to carry a shield or a gun for the rest of his life. This is the kind of thing that makes good police officers' jobs harder. This is why some people hate the police because they see this kind of sick power trip. I've worked with a lot of really good cops & we have some good ones in our area that don't get thanked enough. I feel better knowing the man's Sheriff wants to keep him out of law enforcement for good. I don't want him or his kind in our area. I'm still so angry on behalf of his victim.

  12. Wow, dude. Not cool.


  14. That's why you all stand next to a soccer moms car with your hands on your pistol, thanks

  15. That was bullshit from the get go… Some body there should have helped her… She is my cousin n n didnt deserve any of that…He should spend the rest of his life n prison so he knows what it feels like 2 be man handled……

  16. One day soldiers will wake up and fight against the corrupted law inforcement.

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  19. Never needed a cop never will. Never seen a situation where cops were needed to make the situation better, at least in person. Police have lost respect of Americans and how they think respect is earned is thru force. These cops are the reason gun control is a joke to me. You want mine so I can’t defend myself from you thugs come get em. Best of luck to you. Your going to need it.

  20. theatheistpilgrim

    The other people there should have beat his ass.

  21. The department chose not to charge him? Then She should sue the city and the department for allowing this type of criminl behaviour. Once the case becomes a federal civil lawsuit that could cost the city millions watch how fast they change their tune and go after this shithead.

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