City Councilman Calls 911 On Cop Who Came To Investigate His Collision

Holly Matkin

Marietta City Councilman Reginald Copeland was convicted of misdemeanor disorderly conduct on Jan. 20.

Marietta, GA – A Marietta city councilman ignored police and refused to hand over his license after they responded to help him at the scene of a traffic crash.

Marietta City Councilman Reginald “Reggie” Copeland argued with police for 13 minutes before the exasperated officers finally removed him from his vehicle, bodycam footage showed.

But Copeland was ultimately taken out of handcuffs and allowed to go free after a superior officer responded to the scene, the Marietta Daily Journal reported.

Five days later, the 57-year-old councilman was arrested on four misdemeanor counts of obstructing police.

The incident began at approximately 11 a.m. on May 24, when a 19-year-old driver attempting to make a U-turn crashed into the side of Copeland’s vehicle on Fairground Street, WXIA reported.

Marietta Police Officer Ryan Lukaszewicz responded to the scene and asked both drivers to move their vehicles out of the roadway, bodycam footage showed.

Copeland said that his vehicle wouldn’t start, so Officer Lukaszewicz redirected traffic around them as he spoke to the city councilman about what occurred.

The officer asked Copeland for his insurance and driver’s license information and told one of his fellow officers that he planned to “cut him loose” shortly, the video showed.

But when the officer again asked Copeland for his license, he ignored him and wanted to know if the other driver would be cited.

Officer Lukaszewicz said that was a possibility, but that he had to finish his investigation before he made any conclusions.

He requested Copeland’s license and insurance information several more times before he finally gave up and told the councilman to “forget it.”

He then went to close the driver’s side door of the city councilman’s car, at which point Copeland appeared to kick the door open while accusing the officer of trying to close his foot in the door.

A second later, having still not handed over his driver’s license information, Copeland called 911, declared that he was a city councilman, and requested for a “watch commander” to be dispatched to the scene, the video showed.

Officer Lukaszewicz radioed for another unit as Copeland continued to ignore him and answered the dispatcher’s questions instead.

“Sir, you realize you’re wasting my time and you’re obstructing my investigation, okay?” the officer calmly asked. “You understand that? Are you going to keep ignoring me?”

Copeland continued to disregard Officer Lukaszewicz and complained to the dispatcher that his back was hurting.

“Let her know you’re out with the cops and you’re wasting our 911’s time right now,” the officer told him, to no avail. “Sir, you’re wasting their time. You’re trying to report an accident that we’re already out here for.”

Copeland then turned his attention to Officer Lukaszewicz, and told him that he was actually reporting that the officer tried to shut his foot in the truck door.

“I can’t hear you,” Copeland told the dispatcher, just before he closed his door, rolled up his window, and drove off into a nearby parking lot.

The officer followed him and began knocking on his window, but the city councilman continued to ignore him.

Copeland then placed a call to Marietta Police Deputy Chief Marty Ferrell, and complained to him about the crash and how Officer Lukaszewicz allegedly shut his foot in the door, the Marietta Daily Journal reported.

Chief Ferrell ultimately asked Copeland to hand the phone over to the officer.

“I’m trying to handle an accident but he keeps getting in his car and rolling up the windows. He won’t talk to me, so…” Officer Lukaszewicz explained. “He wants to play games and sit in his car the whole time.”

Moments later, the officer handed Copeland’s phone back to him and ordered him to get out of his truck, but the city councilman’s noncompliance continued, bodycam footage showed.

He began yelling at the officers when they started to pull him from the truck.

“You don’t have to put your hands on me!” Copeland hollered. “I haven’t done anything!”

The city councilman assured the officers that he would get out, then turned his attention back to his cell phone.

Police then went hands-on with him, and warned him that he would be tased if he didn’t get out of the truck.

“This is terrible, man,” Copeland complained as the officers put him in handcuffs.

“I agree,” Officer Lukaszewicz replied. “You’re acting like a child.”

Marietta Police Major Jake King and other superior officers arrived at the scene a short while later, the Marietta Daily Journal reported.

Maj. King ultimately decided to release Copeland until the bodycam footage could be reviewed.

“Without going through all the camera footage right now I think it would be smart of us, which I don’t like and it’s going to cause us a bunch of heartache regardless, that we kick him loose now and kind of drop back and review some of this stuff,” Maj. King told someone over the phone, according to the Marietta Daily Journal.

“He’s not going anywhere, we obviously know him, we won’t have any problems if later we decide to bring charges against him for the obstruction. That’s not an issue,” the major added.

“Yeah, you’re the boss,” Officer Lukaszewicz said.

The city councilman never did end up handing his driver’s license and insurance information over to the officers.

Although Copeland was allowed to walk away from the incident, he was ultimately arrested five days later and booked into jail on four counts of obstructing police.

On Jan. 20, Copeland entered an Alford plea on a single count of misdemeanor disorderly conduct, WSB reported.

In exchange, prosecutors dropped three counts of misdemeanor obstructing police.

State Court Judge Maria Golick ordered that Copeland participate in anger management treatment, and also agreed to seal his court record from the public.

“This court finds that the harm resulting to the privacy of the defendant outweighs the public interest in the criminal history record information being publicly available,” Golick’s order read, according to WSB.

Copeland refused to comment on the incident, according to WXIA.

Comments (84)
No. 1-33
Excalibr4
Excalibr4

What is wrong with these people?

jsant277
jsant277

They get away with stuff like this because the courts are loath to impose any punishment on them. This slap on the wrist only encourages more bad behavior.

Pack
Pack

Should have tazed him

ScaleriBrosLawyer
ScaleriBrosLawyer

I'll never understand people who talk or act their way into trouble just to prove some point. By all accounts, it sounds like this collision wasn't even his fault and had he handed over his documents, pretty standard fare in a car accident, he would have been on his way, so why the drama?

AnnykaV
AnnykaV

What harm, that the voters know he's an asshole?

Shepfershort
Shepfershort

Who do this assholes think they are, fucking ROYALTY? Yer a councilman. Joe Next Door with a title. Power in the hands of mental midgets, is a scary thing. Just look at our Democrats.

LEO0301
LEO0301

The maturity of a 5 year old. How does someone like this get into office?

Cstuartsr
Cstuartsr

When will these idiots realize they work for and represent the people, plus in those positions you can’t have double standards. If everybody has to so do you! It’s absolutely ridiculous how these people think they are above the law! He needed to go to jail that day!!

Bellacat
Bellacat

This councilman is too smart. He didn’t cause the accident so why all the drama. Is he just trying to be a big man? It would be nice to see the supervisor have the six of his Officer instead of giving this councilman Preferential treatment.

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

Sounds like a case where the minor punishment fit the minor crime. So, good, I guess.

Stanracer
Stanracer

He calls the police then refuses to co-operate with them. What an entitled prick. So happy he was charged. Now he should be booted off council.

artw44
artw44

Why are his records sealed?

Cowboycop22
Cowboycop22

His behavior is exactly why he needs a criminal record. You don’t let a person like that stay on city council.

Anomie88
Anomie88

If he is an example of the citizens on their city council, I feel sorry for any denizen of Marietta and any employee of that political subdivision. He is an example that is seen too often in this country--nobody is wrong, nobody respects authority, nobody takes ownership of their behavior and nobody can be told differently. It starts at home, in the schools and blossoms in adulthood. Sad, the greatest generation must be rolling over in their graves.

WhatADan
WhatADan

Empowerment. You give them an inch and they’ll steal a mile.

Razorbackfan
Razorbackfan

Just another hood rat that thinks he’s powerful being a councilman. Absolute idiot.

colonelorville
colonelorville

It's unbelievable how many people are like this councilman. During my years as a Police Officer I dealt with quite a large number. Some of them are still around in high positions in Washington DC.

Ferret guy
Ferret guy

Black privilege is what it is

spclopr8tr
spclopr8tr

I keep hearing how no one is above the law. That is until it is one of them arrested.

rix is retired
rix is retired

Cowboy,, that will never happen.. who do you think voted him into office... those with LIKE beliefs in handling similar situations
.

Raymelson
Raymelson

Looks like he just won Ass hole of the year award

Protector
Protector

Funny how his truck started all of a sudden, but when the cop wanted it off the road it wouldn't start huh? This guys a real asshole..he doesn't belong on city council..he's a disgrace.

ikaika
ikaika

He never did have to provide his license or insurance, which was his problem in the first place. I presume the officer ran him, but geez, what was the big issue with that? There was no mention of his being suspended or uninsured, so why be such a jerk?

RunCop
RunCop

Reggie you piece of fuck

debluvzcats
debluvzcats

I hate people with a sense of entitlement.

SDLucas
SDLucas

There seems to be a disconnect between the assertion that black men must be fearful of unfair or violent treatment by police, and this kind of behavior.

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

Not really. The driver was worried that the accident would be reported to the insurance company in a manner that would raise his rates. This worry may well have been exacerbated by the fact that he was black and the officer was white.

checksix
checksix

I just love the "Don't you know who I am?".

Diwatson
Diwatson

I sincerely hope that the people who voted this jerk in office reconsider and choose a more mature, stable person for the job. Our police have a tough enough job without this kind of garbage.

Jolietjimmy
Jolietjimmy

Like the Police elected People should be held to a higher respect of the law. When a police officer is being investigated they are place on administrative leave, so should elected officials so they can not influence investigation.

militans Deo
militans Deo

If the person does not want to cooperate its time to clear the call and go back on the road. Great call on the Major's part. Uh, OMG we have town politics at play. We're just going to let this guy go, because like we know who he is and we're going to allow him to impede the investigation and abuse 9-1-1.

Bobholly79
Bobholly79

Gee is he a Demo Rat?

Sure looks and sounds like a anti cop from the demo rat party!

For this to end we need the true democrats to stand up and take back their party!!


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