Fayetteville police arrest former officer wanted in St. Louis area for beating man, breaking his jaw

Tuesday, July 18, 2023
NC police arrest officer wanted in St. Louis area for beating man
St. Louis police officer Samuel Davis arrested in North Carolina, charged with kidnapping and beating a man until his jaw broke on 4th of July

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. -- A suburban St. Louis police officer charged with assault and kidnapping for allegedly beating a man until his jaw broke was arrested Monday, St. Louis County police said.

The charges stem from a July 4 arrest that Northwoods officer Samuel Davis made without informing dispatchers or writing a report, according to the probable cause statement.

St. Louis County police said Davis, 26, took the man into custody at a Walgreens store in Northwoods. The officer handcuffed the man and put him in the backseat of his patrol car.

Davis then turned off his own body camera before driving him to a secluded spot in the city of Kinloch. He pepper-sprayed the man, beat him with a baton and told him not to return to Northwoods.

A witness called 911 after finding the bloodied man. Police said the victim's jaw was broken, among other serious injuries.

In addition to witness' information, police said the victim was able to provide some details that help lead to Davis' arrest.

St. Louis Prosecuting Attorney Wesley Bell issued a warrant for Davis' arrest Friday, and police arrested him Monday in Fayetteville, North Carolina.

ABC11 learned Tuesday, Davis was taken into custody at the Fayetteville Police training center after he applied for a job with the department. After he put in his application, recruiters saw there was an active warrant out for his arrest.

"These actions put a black eye on all law enforcement officers who are doing their jobs the right way and who are tired of their profession being dragged through the mud because of the bad actions of a few," Bell said in a statement.

St. Louis County police said Davis is being extradited to St. Louis, where he will be held on a $750,000 cash-only bond.

Davis is being held in the Cumberland County Detention Center, according to its website.

Samuel Mihai Davis (Photo: Cumberland County Detention Center)

Northwoods police Chief Dennis Shireff told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that Davis has been suspended as the investigation plays out. Shireff in a statement provided to The Associated Press said it's "crucial" that he side with prosecutors' findings "unless I come across clear and undeniable evidence that contradicts their conclusions."

NBC Affiliate KSDK says the officer has been fired by Northwoods police.

Chief Shireff released this statement to the station on Monday:

"The St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney's Office has formally charged a former Northwoods Police Department Officer with 1st Degree Assault, Armed Criminal Action, and Kidnapping. We appreciate the diligent work of law enforcement as they have conducted the independent investigation as I have requested to ensure that justice be served. As reported by various media outlets, this person was taken into custody in North Carolina. These types of allegations and charges do not represent acceptable conduct of law enforcement professionals who serve appropriately and honorably. The Northwoods Police Department continues to safeguard against bias, perceived bias, or any appearance of bias that could impact justice being served. As police officers, we uphold the ideals of serving and protecting in our thoughts as well as in our actions. Words can barely begin to express the disappointment and the failure of what appears to be a reckless disregard for the humane treatment of others and the solemn duties of a law enforcement officer. With ongoing community support and meaningful partnerships, our accredited department continues to work towards being better every day. Our goal remains to serve and sustain the trust of our community. This incident is directly contrary to the core values, goals, and policies of our police department and of the City of Northwoods. The City of Northwoods Police Department remains committed to identifying areas of improvement in the hiring, appointing, training, and appointing competent, capable, and compassionate staff who dedicate themselves to diligently serving the community. I appreciate the community's trust in the Northwoods Police Department in upholding the law, the principles of due process, and the idea of fairness for all on behalf of the citizens we serve."

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