GBI: Ex-Tybee Island cop arrested after ‘use of force incident’ involving Atlanta woman

Deandre Howard Taylor

Credit: WSAV

Credit: WSAV

A former Tybee Island police officer was arrested this week in connection with a “use of force incident” that involved an Atlanta woman, her father and her service dog, authorities said.

Deandre Howard Taylor, 27, was arrested by the GBI on Monday, following a grand jury’s indictment on charges of false imprisonment, false statements and simple battery, the agency said in a news release. The GBI had been investigating Taylor’s use of force since the July 18, 2019 incident.

On that day, he arrested Arynne Keeley, of Atlanta, and her father after he received a complaint about the woman's service dog, Savannah-based news station WSAV reported. The incident took place near the Tybee Island beach and involved several beachgoers, the GBI said.

Taylor is accused of being verbally and physically aggressive during the arrests, the news station reported. Keeley told WSAV that her head hit the ground during the incident, which left her with headaches, bruises and soreness.

The Chatham County District Attorney dropped the charges against Keeley and her father shortly after the incident, the news station reported. According to Taylor’s indictment, he had no basis to make the arrests.

The GBI completed its investigation and turned over its findings to the DA’s office for review.

Keeley’s family also told WSAV that they have a pending civil lawsuit against the city of Tybee Island over the incident. City Manager Shawn Gillen declined to comment to the news station about the lawsuit.

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