DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Daytona Beach police Chief Jakari Young fired an officer after seeing video of him using excessive force on a man in custody.
Officer Marville Tucker is now in jeopardy of losing his law enforcement certification in the state.
Young said he was “disgusted” by the video, which showed a man, Anthony Medina, pulled over after an officer suspected he was driving under the influence.
He told officers he could not complete a field sobriety test, so they brought him to police headquarters for a breathalyzer test.
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That’s where the situation between Medina and Tucker unraveled.
Officer Kierstin Rowland initially pulled Medina over and transported him and Tucker was then called into headquarters to operate the breathalyzer. As they wait for the machine, Tucker and the man who was pulled over start exchanging words.
Medina can be heard calling Tucker racial and homophobic slurs while in the holding corridor.
In the first encounter, Medina stands up from a chair while yelling at Tucker. Tucker puts his hand on Medina’s head and forces him back into the chair, then puts his hand around Medina’s neck with his head pressed against the wall.
In the second encounter, Medina again stands up from the chair while yelling at Tucker. Tucker grabs Medina by the neck, shoves him against the wall, forces him back in the chair and then holds his head below his waist for about 20 seconds, video shows.
“I’m handcuffed,” Medina told News 6 in an interview. “There’s no reason for you to be violent with a person that is handcuffed. What could I possibly do?”
The incident happened in July 2021.
News 6 discovered it while investigating another Daytona Beach police encounter.
Medina sent the videos to News 6. He admitted he was under the influence but said Tucker’s actions were excessive.
“I take full responsibility of me, my actions,” Medina said. “But you know, they have to also understand that they have to take responsibility for what they did to me.”
Medina ended up refusing the breathalyzer, and when they take him to the sally port, he approaches Tucker again.
Medina gets nose to nose with Tucker, yelling obscenities. Tucker again grabs Medina by the neck and shoves him back a few feet into the patrol car, while telling him not to get in his face again. Just over a minute passes while officers are restraining Medina and trying to switch his handcuffs.
Medina then kicks Tucker. He and other officers take the suspect to the ground. Tucker and Officer Jorge Pauth can be seen punching Medina several times.
We asked the police chief about the video.
“I was disgusted by it,” Young said. “I made the decision to fire Officer Tucker based on the entirety of what was in the video. That incident was avoidable.”
During an interview with the Office of Professional Standards, Rowland said she did not feel Tucker was professional and should have separated himself from the situation.
“There was plenty of times during Tucker and Medina’s interaction where Tucker could’ve stepped away and avoided conflict,” Sgt. Steven Jessmer said after reviewing the video.
A detective with the Office of Professional Standards also interviewed Tucker.
“I messed up and should have just left,” Tucker said.
His termination letter added he violated six department standards, including use of force.
Pauth, who punched Medina, was also let go.
He got his job back through arbitration but decided he didn’t want to return to the department, according to officials.
Almost a year earlier than the incident described above, Tucker was involved in another situation, during which a Volusia County man was pulled over, leading to a crash and injuries.
The man, Kary Jarvis, filed a lawsuit against the Daytona Beach Police Department, saying two officers violated his civil rights.
A judge ruled Tucker illegally detained a driver. He was not disciplined for than incident.
The Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission will be deciding in a few weeks whether Tucker should be stripped of his certification, according to a spokesperson with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
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