A state trooper who found marijuana and a gun in a car driven by Arkansas State running back Michael Dyer offered to call his coach even though he worried about “NCAA crap” and other fallout, according to video of a traffic stop released Monday.
Arkansas State Police released the 58-minute video and said it had completed an internal investigation into the March 10 stop. It released no details about the investigation, saying it involved personnel matters almost certainly tied to the actions of Trooper Royce Denney.
Dyer was ticketed for going 96 mph in a 70 mph zone, though audio and video from the stop indicate that either Dyer or another unidentified female were in possession of marijuana and a gun. Denney can be heard on the video talking at length with Dyer about how he should handle the incident.
“What if I talk to (coach) Gus Malzahn, or however you say his name?” Denney asks at one point. “I really don’t want to tell him about this because of the NCAA crap. I know there’s a lot of stuff that goes on behind closed doors between coaches and players. I’m still in a predicament, even if I talk to coach.”
Denney also asks Dyer: “What about the weed?” and whether the running back thought it would be “all out of your system” in a month. He berates Dyer for having a gun, saying “You don’t need it. If you think it makes you look cool, you’re stupid.”
“It pisses me off that someone of your stature and your ability does this kind of stupid (expletive),” Denney adds.
The trooper also asked Dyer if the running back wanted him to hold on to the gun, and Dyer says yes.
“I didn’t say keep it,” Denney responds. “Maybe we can get together some other time, and you can have it back after me and coach talk. You understand? … I’m going to let coach make the decision for me. Or, for you. If he wants me to keep it, I’ll keep it. If he wants me to get it delivered to him, I’ll get it delivered to him or whatever.”
Arkansas State, it should be noted, is in Jonesboro, Arkansas. Jonesboro is part of Craighead County, southwest of White County, where Dyer, who was the offensive MVP of the 2011 BCS National Championship Game while at Auburn, was stopped.
That said, news story No. 2:
(Jonesboro, AR) Teresa Carter just doesn’t understand what happened to her son Chavis in the back of a police car. Officers picked him up, said he had drugs on him, and missed a court date on more drugs charges.
“As protocol he was handcuffed behind his back and double locked, and searched”, said Sergeant Lyle Waterworth, Jonesboro Police.
Somehow minutes later police say they heard a thumping noised, turned around and found Chavis dead, shot in the head, in the back of the squad car.
“Any given officer has missed something on a search, be it drugs, knife, razor blades, this instance it happened to be a gun” said Waterworth.
They’re still investigating but they think Chavis, somehow managed to pull out a hidden gun and shot himself in the head.
His mother disagrees, “I think they killed him, my son wasn’t suicidal.”, said Teresa Carter. She says her son called his girlfriend while pulled over, to say he’d call her from jail. The mother said she was also told her son was shot in his right temple. But she says he was left handed. She says it just doesn’t add up.
Police say they’re still investigating and haven’t ruled out the possibility that someone else may have shot Chavis Carter. The officer involved is on leave while they investigate.
Maybe people who disdain black men in the South who focus on football or basketball as their way of getting out (instead of education, they invariably note) should note how much different the outcomes for similar interactions with cops in Arkansas were for these two black men.
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