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Delaware State Trooper Accused Of Brutally Beating 15-Year-Old Over Ding Dong Ditch Prank Indicted

Updated: Oct 1, 2023

Dempsey R. Walters, a Delaware State Police trooper, faces felony charges after an investigation into his alleged brutal beating of a 15-year-old boy who had pranked his house last month. Walters, a 29-year-old trooper with nearly seven years of service, remains suspended without pay or benefits but has not been terminated, according to an announcement by the Delaware Department of Justice and Delaware State Police.

The incident took place while Walters was on duty, and he turned off his body camera during the assault. However, the camera continued to capture video without audio. Officials released the body-cam footage, which showed Walters approaching a Delaware State Police SUV where the handcuffed boy was held. He struck the boy in the face while another trooper stepped aside.

Walters then circled the SUV and activated his body camera's audio, asking the boy, "You sure about that?" The boy responded, "Please tell me what I did?" Walters faces charges including second-degree assault, deprivation of civil rights, third-degree assault, and official misconduct, reflecting his alleged violent actions.

The incident began when, on August 17, Walters confronted a 17-year-old near his neighborhood, leading to a verbal altercation. Later, a 15-year-old and friends engaged in pranks in the area, including ringing doorbells and running away. Walters perceived it as an attempted home invasion, resulting in the deployment of police resources.

Walters detained the 17-year-old and another individual at gunpoint, though they were not involved in the pranks. The 15-year-old was also apprehended and subjected to physical force by Walters, resulting in an orbital fracture.

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Link: USA Today


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