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Former Citronelle police chief indictment alleges use of excessive force

According to the indictment, Norris kneed a man multiple times in the abdomen, causing him injury.

Former Citronelle Police Chief John Tyler Norris

Former Citronelle Police Chief John Tyler Norris has been indicted by a federal grand jury on a charge of using excessive force against a man in his custody and for misleading state investigators.

The indictment accuses Norris of assaulting a man in his custody— kneeing him multiple times in the abdomen, causing injury— in June 2021. Norris is also charged with making a misleading statement to local investigators regarding his conduct related to the assault. 

Norris resigned from the department in September 2021, citing “deteriorating relationships with city officials.”

“Prior to being hired, the Citronelle police department was not a respected police department and we changed that,” Norris said in a statement upon his resignation. “The only ones who might not appreciate the department now are those people who have either been arrested or the politicians who would rather focus on flower beds instead of supporting the police department.”

If convicted, Norris faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison for the alleged use of force and 20 years in prison for making a misleading statement. 

Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division, U.S. Attorney Sean P. Costello for the Southern District of Alabama and Special Agent in Charge Paul W. Brown for the FBI Mobile Field Office made the announcement.

The FBI Mobile Field Office is investigating the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Vicki Davis for the Southern District of Alabama and Trial Attorneys Maura White and MarLa Duncan of Civil Rights Division’s Criminal Section are prosecuting the case.

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Jacob Holmes is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter. You can reach him at [email protected]

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