Man seen on video being kicked in head demands Hamilton Co. deputy be fired

Former inmate at Justice Center speaks out about alleged assault by deputy

WARNING: Some viewers may find the video disturbing.

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - The man seen on video being kicked in the head by a Hamilton County sheriff’s deputy while in handcuffs and restrained on the floor of the county jail is demanding the deputy to be fired for his conduct.

On Thursday, Prosecutor Joe Deters announced Sgt. Jesse Franklin was indicted for the assault at the Hamilton County Justice Center.

Franklin, who has been with the department for 14 years, is charged with one count of assault.

Fanon Rucker, who represents the man who was kicked, said Franklin needs to be terminated immediately and the city needs to add a charge of interference with civil rights.

Franklin faces up to 6 months in the Justice Center if he is convicted.
Franklin faces up to 6 months in the Justice Center if he is convicted. (Source: WXIX)

Deters said on June 9, Nick Ballachino was arrested for disorderly conduct while intoxicated and obstructing official business and transported to the Justice Center.

When deputies and Ballachino arrived, he became combative with the officers trying to process him. While the officers were trying to subdue him, Ballachino bit Franklin’s left foot, according to Deters.

Deters said video from the Justice Center shows Franklin immediately kicking Ballachino one time in the head after he bit him.

Ballachino was taken to University Hospital where he was treated and released back to the Justice Center.

“It was pretty brutal. I felt disrespected,” he said.

Ballachino received five stitches and was determined to be suffering from a concussion, his attorney states.

“It’s scary. You’re basically in survival mode. The more you try the harder they manhandle you,” he said. “It’s horrible at the Justice Center. I‘m sure I’m not the only person this has happened to.”

Man seen on video being kicked in head demands Hamilton Co. deputy be fired

Deters said it’s important officers get proper training.

“Not everyone has the temperament to be a police officer. In this case, and as I have throughout my career when I see criminal violations, I will pursue them according to the law,” Deters said. Maintaining a professional, 21st century police force is expensive to society, but pays for itself many times over. Actions like this are a harsh reminder that resources must be dedicated to recruiting the right kind of officers and ensuring that they have the proper equipment, knowledge, training and temperament to do the job that citizens want and expect.”

As soon as Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Neil found out about the incident, the sheriff said he suspended Franklin’s police powers and ordered an investigation.

Sheriff Jim Neil said he is “outraged” by Franklin’s actions.

“As Sheriff of Hamilton County, I am outraged and shocked by this egregious conduct,” Sheriff Neil said on Thursday. “These actions are inconsistent with our training and will not be tolerated under my watch.”

Franklin is currently in jail, according to Sheriff Neil.

“If this officer can’t control his temper on camera... what is he doing off-camera,” a partner at the law firm said. “We want him to be punished and convicted.”

If convicted, Sgt. Franklin faces up to 6 months in the Justice Center.

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