Henry Police officer fired after Marrow investigation

By Monroe Roark
Times Correspondent

The investigation into an arrest five months ago has resulted in the firing of a Henry County police officer’ and the dismissal of felony charges against the defendant.

The Dec. 2 arrest of Desmond Marrow received a great deal of publicity amid allegations of excessive force by police officers. Marrow was initially charged with terroristic threats, felony obstruction of a law enforcement officer, reckless driving and aggressive driving. The first charge was dismissed initially by a Magistrate Court judge and the second was dismissed by the District Attorney’s office last week.

The two misdemeanor charges are pending and have been transferred to the Solicitor-General’s office for review, District Attorney Darius Pattillo said last week. “We have reviewed the police reports, witness statements, 911 calls, audio and videos, as well as interviewed witnesses, and determined there is insufficient evidence to present any felony charges to a grand jury.”

According to Pattillo’s statement, that review also included multiple 911 calls and video prior to police arrival, as well as audio and video from officers’ patrol car dash cameras and a nearby business.

A review panel regarding the use of force is still looking into the officers’ conduct, Pattillo said, but Henry County Police Chief Mark Amerman said in a separate statement that his department’s Internal Affairs investigation has resulted in the termination of one of the officers involved.

“The Internal Affairs investigation revealed that unnecessary force was used by Officer David Rose and that Officer Rose was recorded stating that he choked Mr. Marrow. He was also recorded stating that he was not going to write that information in his report,” Amerman reported. “This statement was recorded on Officer Rose’s in-car video camera system.”

Officer Rose was administratively charged with maltreatment or unnecessary force, and conduct violations, both through departmental policy and county policy. Amerman said he concurred with the findings of the investigation and terminated Rose’s employment with the HCPD.

The other officer involved was cleared of wrongdoing by Amerman’s department. “The Internal Affairs investigation also revealed that Officer Matt Donaldson’s actions throughout the arrest were within departmental policy,” Amerman said.