Culpepper charged

Published 7:00 am Saturday, September 12, 2015

By Jesse Wright

Picayune Item

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Brent Culpepper, the man who allegedly suffered second-degree burns during an alleged altercation with a Pearl River County deputy, has been formally charged. 

Culpepper is 21, and he lives at 26 Dolly Dr. in Carriere.

Chief Deputy Shane Tucker said Culpepper, in the presence of his lawyer, turned himself in Friday morning and he was charged with resisting arrest and failure to comply stemming from an incident on Aug. 4 on Highway 11. 

At about 3:30 p.m. that day, a narcotics deputy responded to a call from a road repair crew that the driver of a truck was tearing up freshly laid asphalt. The driver of the truck was James Frierson and Culpepper was the passenger. 

The deputy arrested Frierson and charged him with DUI and possession of an open beer in a dry county. However, at the time, Frierson reportedly told the deputy the beer wasn’t his, and that’s when the deputy began to ask for Culpepper’s identification. 

Tucker said that until Friday, Culpepper had also been facing an additional charge for possession of an open beer in a dry county, but he said, “the driver has since taken responsibility for the beer.”

According to the Sheriff David Allison, Culpepper, would not cooperate with the deputy, and after Culpepper hit the deputy’s hand away from him, the deputy had to drag Culpepper out of the truck, at which point the two men fell to the ground and wrestled. 

Culpepper’s mother, Marisa Foxworth Amann, alleges that the deputy “slammed” her son’s face into freshly laid asphalt, a charge Allison denies. 

Never the less, Amann’s Sept. 5 Facebook post about the incident has been shared over 8,000 times and made regional news coverage. 

Tucker said the sheriff’s department will not release the name of the narcotics deputy who made the stop.

“I won’t release it because there’s been veiled threats on social media,” Tucker said. The chief deputy added that he doesn’t want one of his deputies to have to worry about the safety of his family over this incident.

Tucker also said that while the sheriff’s department does usually use body cameras, the deputy did not have a camera on him at the time. But, Tucker said, seven independent interviews have confirmed the sheriff’s account of the Aug. 4 altercation.

“We asked every one of (the witnesses), ‘did you see the officer hold the passenger’s face against the asphalt?’ and they all said ‘no,’” said Tucker.

As of Friday, Culpepper is represented by John Colette of Jackson, Mississippi.

Colette said he was not yet ready to make a comment yet on the case. 

“We still got a couple of things were working on,” he said. 

Culpepper has been released on bond, which was $500 per charge. Both of his charges are misdemeanors.