Oddie Shoupe, a Tennessee sheriff, is being sued for excessive force after a body camera caught him saying, “I love this shit. God, I tell you what, I thrive on it,” after officers shot and killed Michael Dial, an unarmed man, in his car.
Dial’s widow, Robyn Spainhoward, has brought the suit against Shoupe. According to The Guardian, police tried to pull over Dial for driving with a suspended license, but he drove away. Dial was driving an old pickup truck with an attached trailer and the ensuing chase was low-speed. Deputies decided to try to push Dial’s vehicle off the road but Shoupe radioed in telling them to shoot Dial instead.
As The Guardian wrote, “When a deputy had successfully nudged Dial off the road, Reserve Deputy Adam West, who was in pursuit in his own personal vehicle, fired three shots as the vehicle went down into a ditch. Dial died of a gunshot wound to the head.”
Shoupe showed up to the scene after the shooting and another deputy’s body camera caught him saying, “They said ‘we’re ramming him. I said, ‘Don’t ram him, shoot him.’ Fuck that shit. Ain’t gonna tear up my cars.” He also laughed and said, “If they don’t think I’ll give the damn order to kill that motherfucker they’re full of shit.”
You can watch video of these comments from NewsChannel 5, which first reported the news, below.
In an investigation in June, the county’s district attorney deemed the shooting justified. In August, Shoupe told a local paper, SpartaLive, “I hate that this happened, but we are not going to tolerate people coming into this county and running over our citizens and our officers, and we will deal with them severely.”
Shoupe has made no apparent public statement on the latest news; I left a message on his work voicemail and will update this post if I hear back.