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Video: Tennessee Trooper Assaulted During Traffic Stop, Video Goes Viral

April 07, 2016  | 

VIDEO: Tennessee Trooper Assaulted During Traffic Stop, Video Goes Viral

A man punched a Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper Friday night during a traffic stop, and many on Facebook are using video of the incident to promote support for law enforcement.

Trooper William Matsunaga pulled over a vehicle and was in the middle of conducting a sobriety test with the driver on Demonbreun in Nashville, TN. Witnesses noticed the passenger in the car, David Snodgrass, seemed unruly and would not stay in the vehicle as instructed by Trooper Matsunaga, reports

According to the arrest paperwork, Trooper Matsunaga warned Snodgrass many times, which prompted him to arrest the man for public intoxication. Witnesses saw an argument break out and one began filming it on his cell phone. In the video you can see Snodgrass break free from the trooper and throw a punch. The brawl continued into the busy streets. A nearby security guard stepped in to help detain Snodgrass.

The video is now going viral on Facebook among law enforcement supporters with the hashtag #BlueLivesMatter.

Comments (10)

Displaying 1 - 10 of 10

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/7/2016 7:58 PM

Good for that security guard! I'm sure the Trooper appreciated the assistance.

WALT @ 4/8/2016 12:32 AM


John retired IA PD @ 4/10/2016 3:57 PM

I agree that it is great that citizens step in to help LE. But, sometimes the best help could be to film what is happening.

Robert @ 4/11/2016 8:26 AM

WALT...stepping in to help, if you are not wearing a uniform, is a good way to get shot or at least arrested.

The next LEO who shows up might assume the guy "helping" is the bad guy...and then where does it go from there?
I really don't know if I would help...and I PROBABLY would never remove my CCW to help a uniformed LEO, because my priority is keeping me and my family alive....and there is too much potential for mistakes in that situation.
The recent case in Baltimore really opened my eyes...where an undercover LEO was fired upon by his own men. I run dozens of shoot / no-shoot simulations a year at the local virtual range...and that scenario has not come up yet; but it really got me thinking. The 2nd or 3rd LEO on the scene will not have any information other than LEO under attack; he will be hyped up and ready to shoot.

If you are a security guard, in a uniform, it is a different story I guess.

RG @ 4/11/2016 10:00 AM

STOP the press......Did Robert just agree that crazy situations can be very hard to decipher and there is a potential for a mistake. So his answer is to bow out of the situation and let Police deal with it.....Wow, I must have misread that.

Robert @ 4/11/2016 11:53 AM

RG..I guess how I read it is I would not trust the police not to shoot me...and then tell the truth. The LEO / PBA knows exactly how to wordsmith the truth.
--Later, the LEO who shot me would not face trial.
--My estate would settle for money...which would not help me much.

I do not hold animosity towards police (as a population)...I just feel that 5-15% are not good at their jobs...and others lie to protect them.

I wonder how the case in Miami is going to end...a person with a legal gun, shot by an unmarked LEO in the middle of the night fixing his tire. In this case, both LEO and the citizen were probably LEGALLY justified to pull their firearms...but that doesn't really help out the dead guy does it. How much SHTF would be on this board if the LEO would have died...and the citizen lived??? With more CCW holders, that day is coming.

When I teach firearms classes, I teach one golden rule...the moment you pull out your CC Firearm, your past life will change forever.

Jim B. @ 4/17/2016 6:45 AM

OK, this is going to be another one of my long ones so bear with me. It's a multi-parter.

Robert, so if I had to characterize you from previous posts on this site I would say you are generally distrustful of police but I would stop short of labeling you as a rabid anti-cop person. I could be wrong in either direction and I could be confusing you with some other posters so please forgive me if I've gotten it wrong. And it's not meant as an attack in any case, just trying to set the stage for the rest of my comment. I think your first post above is fairly well reasoned and paints a pretty accurate picture of the risks involved when intervening (as a civilian or an off duty cop) in a law enforcement matter like this.


Jim B. @ 4/17/2016 6:47 AM

There is the chance that you will get shot if the situation goes that far either by the officer involved if he thinks your rushing up to help the bad guy (not an unreasonable reaction) or by other responding officers who will just see one guy in uniform struggling with two guys in civies (also not an unreasonable reaction).

There is also the chance that you could be arrested under the mistaken impression that you were one of the bad guys. I think the likelihood there is that it would be a short detention until the situation gets sorted out. If you do intervene, be prepared to be treated as a suspect and put in handcuffs when the backup units arrive. Don’t take it personally and cooperate with all of their instructions. But probably once the original officer can explain, “this guy was trying to help me” the cuffs will come off and you’ll be free to go (likely with the thanks and gratitude of the cop involved).


Jim B. @ 4/17/2016 6:48 AM

But what I really wanted to point out, and what I think RG was alluding to, is that fact that your post, Robert, does a very good job of explaining how chaotic and confusing a law enforcement confrontation can be. How difficult it can be to sort out what’s going on, who is who and what is what in a time frame that may be mere seconds long. And yes, sometimes mistakes will be made. The difference, as you pointed out in your post, is you have the choice of whether or not to get involved. When you see an officer in a struggle and maybe getting his ass kicked, you can decide, “wow, I’d like to help but I don’t want to risk my life and livelihood, think I’ll stay out of it.” You have that option. It’s a reasonable response and I’m not faulting you for it. The original officer on scene or an officer responding to a disturbance or investigating a crime, doesn’t necessarily have that option.


Jim B. @ 4/17/2016 6:51 AM

I point all of that out to simply say, it would be nice if the cop haters and the people who want to judge cops so harshly would recognize that cop work is oftentimes chaotic and confusing and you sometimes have to make decisions in a matter of seconds and usually without all of the pertinent information available. So when you see cases where an officer is not charged or is acquitted for shooting an unarmed person, or shooting the wrong person or some other situation where an apparent injustice has been committed, it’s not necessarily because the cop lied or because they knew how to “wordsmith” the truth. It’s typically because the courts recognize that: “The calculus of reasonableness must embody allowance for the fact that police officers are often forced to make split-second judgments - in circumstances that are tense, uncertain, and rapidly evolving - about the amount of force that is necessary in a particular situation.” – Graham v Conner; US Supreme Court

That's all for now.

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