Audio Confirms Officers Conspired to Cover-up Assault

NC State Troopers and Wake County Sheriff's Deputy


First there was dash cam video showing at least two North Carolina State troopers, and a Wake County Sheriff’s deputy with a K-9 dog attacking Kyron Dwain Hinton on the night of April 4th in Raleigh.

Hinton, the video shows, was unarmed, even though officers at the scene were told that he was before they arrived.

Kryon Hinton
The 29-year-old Black man sustained a broken nose, fractured eye socket, and several dog bite injuries after the encounter, and spent three days in the hospital before being transported to the Wake County jail. Charges against him were eventually dropped.

The two troopers, Michael G. Blake, and Tabithia L. Davis, an African-American; along with Wake Sheriff’s Deputy Cameron Broadwell, were indicted for felonies by a Wake County grand jury May 15th for their alleged excessive force on Hinton, which included beating him with their flashlights, and unleashing the K-9 dog on the unarmed man.

Troopers Blake and Davis were subsequently fired by the state Highway Patrol last Friday.

But now, according to published reports, there is audio from the dash cam recording from another patrol vehicle on the scene that purportedly reveals that a Highway Patrol supervisor, Sgt. Rodney W. Goswick, may have advised troopers Davis and Blake to lie about the use of force in the incident in their official reports.

An SBI affidavit, presented in Wake Superior Court last Friday, confirms that Sgt. Goswick told the troopers that he had reviewed the video of their confrontation with Hinton, and that “no use of force was evident.”

Defense attorneys for the two now ex-state troopers; did not object when the revelation was made during the court hearing Friday. In fact, as Wake District Attorney Lorrin Freeman began to reference the newfound evidence, Judge Graham Shirley cut her off, and indicated that he, in fact, had already heard the controversial audio.

"Having reviewed the video and audio yourself and the petition, you are aware that there is discussion at the end of it regarding the filing of reports that would have reflected no use of force in this instance?" Freeman asked Judge Shirley in open court.

"If in fact these individuals went in, as discussed, and filed reports reflecting that they had not used force…,” DA Freeman continued, “… when they clearly have otherwise in the same audio made admissions of using force, then [the law] does not protect a law enforcement officer who comes and fraudulently and falsely files reports of the incident."

Judge Shirley then recited what he says he heard on the recording.

"[Sgt] Goswick told them specifically what to put in. Ordered them! If you listen to his order, his order didn’t tell him to write the report. His order was 'this is what we're going to put in the report, everybody agree on that,' essentially," Judge Shirley said.

Prosecutors filed motions to have access to both Blake and Davis’ personnel files for trial. It has already been reported that Blake was involved in a previous excessive force case in 2016.

"(There are) several incidents that the state is already aware of, of prior use of force investigations involving defendant Blake. It is the state's position, your honor, that this very well may constitute a pattern of conduct which would be admissible against him in a trial of this matter,” D.A. Freeman said.

Judge Shirley indicated that he will consider the matter, and what personnel material, if any, would be released for trial.

Meanwhile, Sgt. R. W. Goswick has reportedly been placed on administrative duty by the NC Highway Patrol last Friday, though no official reason was given.

Defense attorneys for the troopers also petitioned for Kyron Hinton’s medical records to be kept intact, trying to build a case that he had a mental disorder as well as a history of drug use. Advocates for Hinton said he suffers from PTSD.

Hinton is currently facing a possible misdemeanor charge for allegedly kicking a deputy on June 2.