Acting Attorney General Andrew J. Bruck announced that an officer of the Chesilhurst Police Department has been indicted for firing a Taser at the operator of a moving all-terrain vehicle (ATV) while arresting him. The civilian, a 23-year-old man, crashed the ATV and suffered significant injuries.
The Office of Public Integrity and Accountability (OPIA) yesterday obtained a state grand jury indictment charging Police Officer Tyquan McIntosh, 28, of Minotola, N.J., with Official Misconduct (2nd Degree), Aggravated Assault (3rd Degree), Tampering with Public Records or Information (3rd Degree), and Falsifying or Tampering with Records (4th Degree).
McIntosh was initially charged by complaint-summons on March 15, 2021 with third-degree aggravated assault for allegedly using excessive force during an arrest by firing his department-issued conducted energy device (CED), an Axon X2 Taser, at the victim while he was operating an ATV, causing significant bodily injury.
Shortly after 11:00 p.m. on Aug. 12, 2020, Officer McIntosh was on patrol when he saw the victim operating an unregistered ATV on public streets.
McIntosh followed the victim in his patrol vehicle until the ATV stalled. McIntosh then exited his vehicle and attempted to approach the victim, ordering him to get off of the ATV.
At that point, the victim managed to restart the ATV and began driving away. It is alleged that McIntosh then discharged the Taser, striking the victim in the back and causing him to flip and crash the ATV. The victim was taken to Cooper University Hospital in Camden, where he was treated for a fractured vertebra, a fractured collar bone, and a concussion.
McIntosh allegedly included false statements concerning his deployment of the Taser in one or more official reports that he filed with the Chesilhurst Police Department about the incident.
The statewide CED policy in place at the time expressly prohibited a police officer from discharging a CED against the operator of a moving vehicle, including an ATV, unless use of deadly force against the vehicle operator would be authorized. In December 2020, Attorney General Grewal issued a new Policy on Conducted Energy Devices and Other Less-Lethal Devices and Ammunition as part of the first revised statewide “Use of Force Policy” in two decades. The new policy continues that prohibition against firing a CED at the operator of a moving vehicle.
Second-degree charges carry a sentence of five to 10 years in state prison and a fine of up to $150,000. The second-degree charge of official misconduct carries a mandatory minimum term of five years in prison without possibility of parole. Third-degree charges carry a sentence of three to five years in state prison and a fine of up to $15,000, while fourth-degree charges carry a sentence of up to 18 months in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
The indictment is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.
Deputy Attorney General Brian Uzdavinis is prosecuting the case for the OPIA Corruption Bureau, under the supervision of Bureau Chief Peter Lee and DCJ Deputy Director Anthony Picione. Acting Attorney General Bruck thanked Acting Prosecutor Jill Mayer and the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office for their assistance in the investigation.