JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A police officer arrested Saturday accused of hitting a handcuffed teenager was caught on camera in April hitting a young man he was trying to arrest at a hospital. In both cases, Officer Tim James said the suspects had spit on him.
James was also investigated last month after he struck and killed a pedestrian on University Boulevard while responding to a burglary with injuries.
On Saturday, James was charged with battery and booked into the Duval County jail after fellow officers saw him hitting 17-year-old Elias Campos while he was handcuffed in the back seat of a patrol car.
"I never thought he would be that brutalized," said his brother, Jesus Felix Campos.
James, who had been with JSO for 3.5 years, was stripped of his police powers while he's under investigation by by the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office and the State Attorney's Office.
James was also the officer who could be seen in cellphone video hitting 21-year-old Daniel Nyman at UF Health Jacksonville on April 26. Nyman, was released from jail Monday after his mother said the charges of battery on a law enforcement officer were dropped.
Nyman's mother claims video of the event shows police brutality. James can be seen in a verbal altercation with Nyman, then the officer taking him down. When Nyman's mother rushed in, she was tackled by another officer.
"It was definitely excessiveness," Nyman's mother, Julie Yarbrough, said at the time. "My son's 100 pounds. This guy is 300 pounds, and there was multiple officers around."
A police report confirms another officer at UF Health Jacksonville at the time was James' wife. She defended her husband's physical response.
The following month, 62-year-old Blane Land died after he was hit by Lane's cruiser.
Police said Land ran onto University Boulevard West near Philips Highway from a Burger King in front of a fire truck. He made it to the center travel lane, and once the fire truck passed, he darted back toward Burger King into the path of the police car.
Police said it was a suicide by Land and filed no charges. Land's family said there's no way he would have been trying to kill himself.
“We have nothing but questions at this point,” Stacy Land said last month. “My brother didn't dart, ever. He didn't run, ever."
In both beating incidents, James said the suspects spit on him, which is concerning for News4Jax crime and safety expert Gil Smith.
"It is possible it could have happened twice, but it does raise a lot of suspicions because he keeps saying it each time," Smith said. "If a person is handcuffed, there is really no reason for a police officer to hit him."
James is the 18th officer arrested since Mike Williams became sheriff in July 2015. Thirty officers have been suspended and 50 more have resigned or retired while under investigation over that time.
"The word is out there (that) this sheriff is not going to tolerate police misconduct," Smith said.
News4Jax has requested James' employment history from JSO. We also asked Williams for a comment and were told Saturday’s statement by Undersheriff Pat Ivey is all JSO would be releasing