Trooper caught on video in altercation with construction crew
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A disturbing video surfaced involving a Kentucky State Trooper and a road crew.
The video captures an altercation between the trooper and the paving crew Sunday night on Dixie Highway near the Patton Museum.
Joey Gaddis is the man recording the video. He says he along with several others were working for Scotty's Contracting & Stone doing paving work from Radcliff to the Meade County area on 31-W.
He says the man in the video avoided the slow sign, the light, and the cones that were marking the lane. Gaddis says that one of the paving crew employees yelled at him to slow down. That's when he says the driver slammed on his brakes, jumped out of his personal vehicle, got into a road crew member's face and started screaming.
"Runs up to one of our guys on the paver and basically gets right in their face and starts screaming," Gaddis said. "Once he does, he pulls out a badge and says I'm a state trooper and he was in plain clothing."
The man in the video identified himself as Trooper Harrison. On Monday, KSP spokesman Sgt. Josh Lawson identified the trooper as Anthony Harrison from KSP Post 4 in Elizabethtown.
In the video, Harrison approaches a paving crew employee while screaming at her and others at the scene. The construction employee told the trooper "not to yell" at her. Harrison responded and said, "I will yell at you." Then came close to the employee's face. Harrison then tried to snatch a camera from Gaddis.
"He basically lost it," Gaddis said. "He just come at me, he grabbed my arm, my phone. I felt like he was trying to go for my neck. I got worried then. One of our other coworkers stepped in that's when he actually hit one of our other coworkers in the mouth and busted his lip."
An altercation ensued and the construction employees somehow pinned the trooper to the ground on fresh asphalt. One construction employee can be heard calling 911.
Sgt. Lawson said he had seen the video but is not sure what precipitated the confrontation. KSP's internal affairs branch is investigating. Harrison is in plain clothes in the video; Sgt. Lawson said it appeared he was off duty.
Gaddis said Harrison was in his personal vehicle.
"It is startling," Sgt. Lawson said. "Given the information we have just being the video, just having that to base any of our facts or opinions, just seeing the video it's startling and upsetting."
Gaddis says the trooper's behavior is upsetting because they work with state troopers all the time while they do their jobs.
"You can't be the face of Kentucky State Police and act like this," Gaddis said. "We are out here paving these roads to make them better for people. We've got enough dangers to deal with. We could have went into the other lane where traffic is trying to wrestle this guy to the ground got hit by a car. We all want to go home at night to our families."
"The video doesn't get started until the incident is already underway, so a lot of the buildup or anything that occurred prior to that, that led to this upsetting event isn't captured in the video," Sgt. Lawson said. "It is not how we would like them (troopers) being portrayed at all or the behavior that is typical or condoned by state police."
Sgt. Lawson said Harrison was off work Monday. No disciplinary action has been taken as the investigation is ongoing.
Gaddis says they had to redo the pavement that was damaged.
WAVE 3 News did leave a message for Harrison at the KSP Post 4 and have not heard back as of yet.
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