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Woman slammed on the ground by JPSO deputy says no one would believe her without the video

The deputy and his use of force remain under investigation.

JEFFERSON PARISH, La. — It’s a 14 second video, posted online, that 34-year-old Shantel Arnold has a hard time watching. 

“I can’t watch it to know that was me, without crying out hysterically,” said Arnold. “I can’t watch it.” 

It happened last month on Richard Avenue in Jefferson Parish. Arnold says she had just gotten beat up by a group of teenagers when a Jefferson Parish Deputy showed up and beat her up as well.  

“He just went to slamming me, pulling my hair and slamming my head and just dragging me, like he didn’t want to hear anything,” said Arnold.  

According to JPSO, that unidentified deputy was responding to a report of people fighting. When he got there, the fight was over, and Arnold was walking to her nearby home.  

“When the police had come, I was a couple of feet from my house,” said Arnold. 

Arnold, who is four foot eight inches tall, says that’s when the deputy, twice her size, accused her of being drunk. In a statement to Eyewitness News JPSO claims Arnold refused to comply with the deputy and when put under arrest for that fight, she resisted.  

“It was basically the cop trying to throw everything on me like I was the aggressor for whatever happened that day,” said Arnold.  

Arnold admits to having a drink but says she did nothing wrong. 

“My whole body is just marked up, like scratched up,” said Arnold.  

The short video, which the sheriff’s office calls “selectively edited” by whoever posted it online, shows the deputy slamming Arnold to the ground while gripping her hair. Arnold says some of it was ripped out. 

 “I had bald spots in my head,” said Arnold. “I had a lot of knots in my head as well.” 

“As any human would be, I’m shocked,” said ACLU of Louisiana Executive Director Alanah Odoms. 

Odoms says what happened in that video speaks to a larger issue.  

“I think what our community members have known for decades is that Jefferson Parish is a very dangerous place for people in black and brown communities,” said Odoms.  

An internal investigation is now underway at JPSO into that deputy’s actions. Arnold says it is a bit embarrassing to be all over social media but is grateful someone filmed what happened. 

“If it wouldn't be for the video it would be he said against she said, and my say wouldn’t matter. So, I think the video, that’s what I needed. Thank God for the video,” said Arnold. 

Arnold was released at the scene and hasn’t been charged with any crime. The JPSO is trying to track down the person who filmed the video 

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