Bucks Prosecutor Will Investigate Teen Suspect’s Facial Injuries

Did police beat him? Or was it an accident of his own making?

You’ve probably seen the scary face injuries suffered by 14-year-old Joseph Williams last week: His family alleges Williams was beaten by Tullytown police who suspected him of shoplifting; police say he hurt himself running from them after he’d been arrested on suspicion of shoplifting—claiming the boy tripped and face-planted while his hands were cuffed behind him.

Now Bucks County District Attorney David Heckler says his office is investigating whether police committed misconduct in the case.

The Inquirer:

Heckler said Tullytown’s police chief requested the District Attorney’s Office and the FBI to probe the incident.

“I have to assume that the [mother’s] allegation would be, he sustained these injuries as a result of other misconduct, and we’ll look into it,” Heckler said, adding that his office would interview any witnesses, the police officers, and the teenager himself.

Sounds like Heckler’s already got a conclusion in mind however. “Heckler said police had justification to use the Taser under those circumstances. … He said the teen’s suffering injuries did not necessarily mean the police engaged in misconduct.”