An Independence County deputy has been suspended without pay after Sheriff Shawn Stephens completed his investigation into an incident that happened overnight on June 21.
In a statement released Friday morning, Stephens said, “The deputy involved has been suspended without pay and required to complete additional training.”
Stephens said Deputy McGilton has served most of that suspension and will return to work on Sunday.
Stephens said in his release the training McGilton is required to attend is “directed towards individuals with disabilities and cognitive behavioral.”
Stephens further stated that there were no findings of a criminal act was found, but added, “policy violations supported the disciplinary actions,” and “were issued in accordance with the Independence County Employee Handbook.”
The action comes from a domestic incident Sunday night near Bethesda.
Kevin and Kandy Dowell got into an argument late that night at their home, prompting their young daughter to call authorities when Kevin said he “took the keys.”
A deputy whom Kevin Dowell identified as McGilton was the first to respond and did so within “about 20 minutes” after he was called.
Dowell told the Batesville Guard that by the time McGilton got to their house, the incident between him and his wife had cooled.
“By the time he arrived, the whole house was calm,” Kevin Dowell said. “I was laying in bed.”
Dowell said McGilton arrived and “told me to get out of bed which I said, ‘I can talk to you right here.”
Kevin Dowell then stated that McGilton replied with, “Get the [expletive] up before I arrest you.”
“I popped up, put my shoes on and and said, ‘yes we sure will go outside and talk.’”
After McGilton asked if Kevin Dowell was threatening him, Dowell said he was ‘invoking the fifth.”
Kevin Dowell said McGilton lost his temper and said he was placing Dowell under arrest.
“I said, ‘No I’m not,’” Kevin Dowell told the Batesville Guard. Somewhere in that exchange, Kandy Dowell began filming with her phone.
The recorded portion of the incident shows the deputy screaming obscenities and trying to get his way into the door.
“Get on the [expletive] ground,” the deputy screams at someone off camera, presumably Kevin Dowell.
Meanwhile, Kandy is pleading with the deputy to calm down.
“Stop, please, sir,” Kandy repeatedly says in the recording. “What is wrong with you?”
Kevin Dowell said his daughter called for help again.
Stephens arrived on scene about a minute and a half after Kandy began filming.
“Shawn showed up and the other officer shut down all the crazy stuff,” Dowell said. “Shawn came in and talked to both of us calmly as any man could and I appreciate the care he had.”
Kevin Dowell said on Monday it isn’t the first time deputies have been to his residence.
“Me and my wife have problems like any else,” Kevin said. “They come see me about once a month sometimes. I’m disabled. I got PTSD and a very bad back, but they come with care and not guns drawn. I have a lot of respect for ICSO, but not this officer. I get along with all of them I come in contact with. Sure, I’m and easy-going guy, but I’m easy going unless pushed like [Sunday] night.”