An Ohio deputy has been charged with misdemeanor assault after he was seen on video kicking a jail inmate in the head for biting his boot.

Sgt. Jesse Franklin with the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office was arrested on Thursday and booked into the same jail where the incident occurred on June 9.

Officers took the inmate, Nick Ballachino, to the jail after arresting him on charges of disorderly conduct while intoxicated and obstructing police, according to a statement from Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters. 


Ballachino became combative when corrections officers were trying to process him at the jail. Surveillance footage obtained by the Cincinnati Enquirer shows he was surrounded by several officers and placed face down on the floor while he was handcuffed.

“While the officers were trying to subdue him, Ballachino bit Franklin’s left foot,” the prosecutor said in a statement.  “Franklin was wearing work boots when this happened. Video from the Justice Center shows Franklin immediately kicking Ballachino one time in the head after he bit him.”

Ballacunio was taken to the hospital and was treated before being released back to the Justice Center.

The kick resulted in a cut above his left eye that required 5 stitches. The injury was not serious enough to warrant a felony assault charge, according to the prosecutor.

Franklin, who had worked for the sheriff’s office for 14 years, faces up to six months in jail if convicted.

"Not everyone has the temperament to be a police officer," Deters said. "In this case, and as I have throughout my career, when I see criminal violations, I will pursue them according to the law."

Sheriff Jim Neil said at a press conference Thursday that Franklin had been suspended without pay and stripped of his police powers, adding that he ordered a criminal investigation as soon as be became aware of the incident.

”I am outraged and shocked by this egregious conduct,” Neil said. “These actions are inconsistent with our training and will not be tolerated under my watch.”

Due to collective bargaining agreements between deputies and the county, a disciplinary process must be followed, Neil said.

Ballachino on Friday demanded that Franklin be fired for his conduct. 

During a press conference with his attorneys, he said he was later determined to have a concussion and still suffered from headaches and bouts of dizziness.

"If it was me and three or four of my buddies, and we had a guy down in handcuffs, and I reared back and I kicked a guy like that, I'd be sitting in the Justice Center right now on my way to the penitentiary," Ballachino said.

One of his attorneys, Fanon Rucker, said they’re asking Neil to hold Franklin accountable and demanded that Franklin also be charged with interfering with civil rights.

"That individual needs to be terminated immediately from his position as an employee of this county. He needs to be prohibited from being able to pursue law enforcement positions elsewhere,” Rucker said.