Teen in Indy Police Brutality Probe Arrested


A biracial teen at the center of a high-profile police brutality investigation in 2010 was arrested Wednesday night at his home on Indianapolis' east side.

Indianapolis police had gone to the 7700 block of Mountain Stream Way with a warrant for an arrest at the home where Brandon Johnson, 16, lives.

When they arrived at the home, police said they found a gun, bullets, drugs and gang paraphernalia there.

Johnson was arrested on charges of criminal gang activity and dangerous possession of a firearm. His two older brothers, Miketavious Jackson, 19, and Terrell Jackson, 18, were arrested on drug possession and criminal gang activity charges.

Sgt. Linda Jackson told 6News' Joanna Massee that the arrests were the culmination of an investigation of gang activity and narcotics.

Johnson's attorney, Stephen Wagner, said police targeted his client unjustly.

Wagner said 14 officers stormed the house and that charges against Johnson are retaliatory. Wagner claimed that the only gun in the house was properly registered and that he suspects the gun charge was related to a cell phone picture of a gun.

Wagner also claimed that the criminal gang activity charge related to a sweatshirt Johnson was wearing in memoriam of a friend who died in a shooting.

Wagner said Johnson's mother has been harassed, was pulled over recently and held for an hour with no charges filed.

Wagner said Johnson is being charged as an adult. He was being held in a juvenile facility on Thursday.

"We are working with the city, or attempting to work with the city, toward resolving that claim, but there is a rift between the police and the chief and the mayor, and the police themselves, apparently, are trying to take this matter into their own hands," Wagner said.

Johnson was at the center of a firestorm of racial tension in Indianapolis last summer, when he suffered a swollen eye, bruises to his face and chipped teeth in an encounter with police who were arresting his brother.

The case sparked allegations of police brutality and led to internal investigations and a federal probe that is still ongoing.

Officer Jerry Piland, who was accused of using excessive force in that incident, was later exonerated by a merit board.

The Rev. Al Sharpton came to Indianapolis twice to protest officials' handling of the Johnson incident, and Johnson's family members vowed that the case "isn't over."

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