ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — The scene was chaotic and dramatic as Nokomis Chaney was arrested for battery on a law enforcement officer.
Channel 9 investigative reporter Daralene Jones requested the video after prosecutors decided not to pursue a criminal case against Chaney, but instead charged former Orange County deputy Ayler Cruz with perjury and misdemeanor battery.
“He doesn’t need to be an officer, he’s too aggressive,” Chaney told Jones.
We don’t have video from inside the apartment where it started because of state law and privacy concerns. But there is audio, and you can hear the chaos. Outside, Chaney’s husband immediately raises concerns about the tactics.
“Hey, hey, ya’ll don’t have no right to go in there, don’t go in there. That’s against the law. You know that,” he asserted.
Cruz makes his way out of the apartment, and gets into a heated verbal exchange with Chaney, who questions why her husband is being handcuffed and insists the deputies need a warrant to go in the apartment. In the recording, Cruz denies this.
“First you didn’t want us there, we’re not up there. Go up there now! Now, we don’t want you down here,” Cruz can be heard stating.
Prosecutors believe Cruz became frustrated during the exchange in which expletives were shouted by the woman, and he eventually rushes up the stairs toward Chaney who was then toward the top of the staircase and walking away, forcing her down in an attempt to handcuff her.
Prosecutors flagged the case based in his report, Cruz justified her arrest for battery on a law enforcement officer because he said Chaney was holding a carton of juice box in her hands and started to swing the box toward deputies, which prosecutors questioned considering the distance between them and never saw on body camera video.
Prosecutors called it manufactured testimony and believe he falsified his report to fabricate a crime and committed battery, leaving Chaney with bruises.
“The police are supposed to be the people that are supposed to protect you,” Chaney said.
Prosecutors pointed out other questionable tactics in Cruz’s history. His trial is scheduled for May. His attorney, David Bigney, didn’t want to comment on the case.