SMITHFIELD, N.C. — A grand jury has indicted a North Carolina police officer on a charge of involuntary manslaughter in the stun-gun death of a man apprehended following a high-speed chase.
News media outlets report that the Johnston County grand jury returned the indictment this week against Kenly detective Jesse Santifort.
Santifort is accused of using a stun gun on 37-year-old Alexander Warren Thompson on March 3. Thompson died three days later. Santifort is white, as was Thompson.
Santifort faces up to 16 months in prison if convicted.
Town Manager Greg Dunham said Santifort is on “reserve status,” meaning he’s no longer a full-time employee.
An autopsy showed Thompson died from a lack of oxygen to the brain after being stunned four times.
Jail records don’t indicate whether Santifort has an attorney.