“All the damage that took place in this case came from (ex-Gwinnett Sgt. Michael) Bongiovanni,” Britt said, referring to the facial injuries sustained by Hollins, who was pulled over and punched by Bongiovanni.
McDonald was next on the scene, responding to a call for help from Bongiovanni. Cell phone video showed Hollins handcuffed and lying prone on the pavement at a busy Gwinnett intersection when stomped by McDonald. (Britt said his client merely placed his foot on the suspect’s head.)
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Henrich instructed jurors to maintain their focus on McDonald.
“This case is not about Michael Bongiovanni,” she said. “It’s about this man, and his actions.”
Bongiovanni struck a plea deal with prosecutors, avoiding any prison time by agreeing to testify against his former charge.
McDonald, charged with battery, violation of oath of office and aggravated assault, faces up to 26 years in prison if convicted.
Britt, in his opening statement, indicated McDonald will take the stand in his own defense.
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