Galveston
Body camera footage released shows Texas Rangers leading Donald Neely.

‘This is gonna look really bad’: Bodycam Footage Shows Texas Rangers Leading Black Man with Rope

On Aug. 3, Texas Rangers in Galveston, Texas, handcuffed and detained Donald Neely, who has a history of mental illness. They proceeded to lead him down the street with a rope.

One of the officers said “this is gonna look really bad” shortly before he started heading down the street with Neely in tow. The comment was heard on body camera footage released Wednesday by the Galveston Police Department at the end of an administrative review of the controversial arrest.

The video lays out the scene leading up to the arrest.

“Why do you keep coming back here, Mr. Neely?” one officer asks. “You were asked by the property manager not to come back, ever. You’ve been arrested here multiple times for criminal trespass, and you know that.”

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Then the officer asks the other one whether they should go and get the truck to transport Neely, but the first officer says no. That’s when they decide to lead him with a rope.

“This is gonna look really bad,” one of the officers says. “This is gonna look so bad.”

The body camera footage was released after the photos sparked national outrage and the department apologized for its treatment of Neely. Galveston city officials ended up requesting a third-party investigation into the arrest. But the third party said it did not warrant a criminal investigation into the officers’ conduct.

However, the county also investigated the Rangers’ handling of Neely. The city released the body camera footage after receiving that report on Wednesday, but it did not release the report, according to CNN. The Galveston police chief will now review the report and has to decide what to do next.

Neely’s struggles with this incident continue. A hearing for Neely on that charge is scheduled for Oct. 24, and he will be pleading not guilty, CNN reported.

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