ECU police officer who responded to St. Patrick's Day assault fired
Posted April 19, 2016
Greenville, N.C. — An East Carolina University police officer was fired Tuesday for violating department policies when he responded to a St. Patrick's Day assault that started near a downtown Greenville night club and ended on the school's campus, officials said.
Police said the incident started outside Club 519 on Cotanche Street when Patrick Myrick, 26, struck a woman in the face, knocking her to the ground. Several of the woman's friends confronted Myrick nearby and assaulted him, police said.
Myrick was able to get away, but the group chased him onto the ECU campus, where they assaulted him a second time, police said.
Arrest warrants state that Myrick, who isn't affiliated with ECU, was repeatedly kicked in the head and suffered a broken nose, bleeding in his right eye – both eyes were swollen shut – and cut and swollen lips.
Six people, including the son of a Greenville police officer, have been charged in the assault.
ECU police Sgt. Ralph Whitehurst handcuffed Myrick after the assault but didn't question him about the case, which ECU Police Chief Gerald Lewis said was unacceptable.
"Our responsibility as police officers is to help and provide aid, and that did not happen in this instance in a way that is appropriate for someone who had been badly assaulted," Lewis said in a statement. "This response does not represent what we expect of our officers, nor is it representative of our record in the community."
Lewis said he will look to provide more training to officers and hire someone to review officers' actions as captured on body-camera video.