It started on July 4th, 2019 when Wilson Officer Josh Taylor got a call about a domestic disturbance. When Josh arrived at the scene, he found a large man, named Jared Lakey, walking down the street with no clothes on but his black socks. Josh knew instantly this was someone who wasn’t in his right mind. Incidents like this can be drug related and extremely dangerous. Josh called for back up because he knew he couldn’t take Lakey into custody alone. When Josh’s partner Officer Brandon Dingman got there, they tried to handcuff Lakey, but he was just too strong and too big, weighing about 350 pounds. Lakey was fighting Josh and Brandon the whole time, and they knew the situation was getting out of control.
So Josh and Brandon decided they would use a non-lethal taser to subdue Lakey. The first time they tased Lakey, he ripped the barbs of the taser out. They tased Lakey again, and again Lakey pulled out the barbs. What this meant is that Lakey wasn’t feeling the full stun of the taser and they weren’t able to subdue this very large, naked, and erratic man. A third and fourth taser stun also failed. At this point, Lakey was sitting on the ground and wasn’t going anywhere. He was fine and contained, but they needed to bring him in. So Josh and Brandon called for more back up and a county deputy sheriff arrived. This deputy sheriff put him in a neck restraint, and then Josh and Brandon got Lakey’s arms and handcuffed him and then sat him up.
They called medics, an ambulance came, and Lakey went to the hospital. There was nothing more they could do.
Unfortunately, after two days in the hospital, Lakey passed away. During the autopsy, it was discovered that Lakey had an enlarged heart and some lung issues. Drug screens weren’t reliable because Lakey has been pumped full of fluids in the hospital and as a result the coroner couldn’t determine a cause of death. As was routine, both the Chief of Police and the City Council investigated the incident with Lakey and they both determined Josh and Brandon did nothing wrong.
A politicized prosecutor waited a full year to bring this case against these officers…and that was after they were TWICE CLEARED by both the Chief of Police and the City Council for his actions. That’s TWO separate findings that Josh and Brandon acted properly!
So why are Officers Dingman and Taylor on trial???
A year after the incident, a politicized prosecutor decided to charge Josh and Brandon with second-degree murder for his own gain. We must help these officers and their families fight these unjust charges!
To help these officers and their families through this difficult time, donate at https://nationalcenterforpolicedefense.com/donate/