“By their vote, the Grand Jury has indicated that there is insufficient evidence of any felony,” Heck said. “The appropriate felony charge the Grand Jury was asked to consider is felonious assault, which requires evidence of serious physical harm.”
Brannon said Heck should have appointed a special prosecutor because the county was both presenting this case to grand jury and defending the sheriff’s office against Swink’s lawsuit.
“Quite frankly I’m upset that the Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office failed to obtain an indictment,” he said. “I think it’s probably by design due to the fact there is a clear conflict of interest.”
SPECIAL PROJECT: Lawsuits, accusations plague county jails in the region
Heck said Dayton police were asked by Sheriff Phil Plummer only to investigate the pepper-spraying, not whether Sealey violated jail policy or whether public records were destroyed or stolen when the video disappeared from the jail and got into Brannon’s hands.
Plummer said Monday that his office is now “conducting the internal investigation which deals with policies and procedures.”
Sealey has been on paid administrative leave since October, shortly after Brannon’s lawsuit brought the incident to light. She was paid $91,375 last year, accroding to the I-Team Payroll Project.
RELATED: Payroll Project - Search salaries
Heck also noted that the decision about whether to pursue misdemeanor charges rests with the city of Dayton. Dayton City Prosecutor Stephanie Cook said no decision has been made yet, but the process would typically begin with her office getting a police report and speaking to the alleged victim.
RELATED: Woman at center of pepper spray lawsuit back in court
Misdemeanor assault charges require evidence of only harm, not serious physical harm.
"This was serious enough to cause her to become unconscious. That seems pretty serious to me," Brannon said. "I think the FBI needs to now conclude their investigation and bring criminal charges since the Montgomery County prosecutor failed to appoint a special prosecutor and complete the task properly, and this woman should never be allowed to go back to work in our Montgomery County jail."
DOWNLOAD OUR MOBILE APPS FOR LATEST BREAKING NEWS