Cobb County District Attorney Joyette Holmes said prosecutors work to do the right thing, “even when it’s not understood by others.”
“We are guided by standards of prosecution and high ethical standards which remind us that ‘The prosecutor serves the public interest and should act with integrity and balanced judgment to increase public safety both by pursuing appropriate criminal charges of appropriate severity, and by exercising discretion to not (or not continue to) pursue criminal charges in appropriate circumstances’,” she said.
Sarah Flack, the attorney representing Lewis, did not return a call from The Atlanta Journal-Constitution requesting a comment.
Officers were dispatched to IHOP just after midnight March 31, 2019, and were told Lewis and his wife had a dispute with employees. According to an arrest warrant obtained by Marietta police, Lewis allegedly threatened to shoot people inside the restaurant.
In a video posted on Instagram by Lewis’ relative, Lewis and his wife repeatedly tell officers no threat was made. One officer grabbed Lewis and he responded by telling the cop, “please don’t grab me, sir.”
Three officers were seen struggling with Lewis while attempting to handcuff him. The video shows Lewis breaking free and the officers once again trying to restrain him. The scene descends into chaos as Lewis’ wife tries to get him to comply while the officers continue to wrestle with him.
The officers eventually wrestle Lewis to the ground, and one officer is seen on the video punching Lewis several times in the head before he is handcuffed and taken from the restaurant. He was booked into the Cobb County Adult Detention Center and released in early May 2019 while his case moved through the criminal justice system.
A demonstration protesting Marietta Police Department’s handling of the situation was held April 26 around downtown and Glover Park.