Amother’s relief was short-lived after the Georgia cop who aimed a squad car at and hit her son last week was fired before being hired this week by another department in the state.
It took just 48 hours for Taylor Saulters to find a new job with the Oglethorpe County Sheriff’s Office on Monday, ABC News reported. Saulters was fired by Athens-Clarke County Police Department on Saturday for running down Timmy Patmon, a Black man, with his police cruiser during a chase on June 1. Saulters hit Patmon, who had an open warrant for a probation violation, with the right front panel of his squad car, sending him flying onto the vehicle hood and then the pavement. Bystanders at the scene shouted in defense of Patmon and against the officer’s use of force — which was also criticized by Patmon’s mother, Tammy Brown-Patmon.
Despite the criticism and documented misconduct, Oglethorpe County Sheriff David Gabriel actually referred to Saulters as a “great asset” and expressed “no reservations” about hiring him. Gabriel made no reference to holding Saulters accountable for this damaging actions in a statement posted to Facebook.
Officers rarely face department punishment in misconduct cases, but Athens did fire Saulters after watching body camera footage of the incident. However, Oglethorpe County sent a strong message of ignoring police accountability in hiring Saulters who clearly violated policy in hitting Patmon.
As of Tuesday, Patmon, who suffered minor injuries, was being held on $1,500 bond at Athens-Clarke County Jail on a misdemeanor charge of obstruction of a law enforcement officer, according to court records. It looks as if Patmon’s case will not go unignored with bystanders and family defending the man, and Saulters will likely face public pressure to answer for his actions.