Deputy struck by another deputy with a flashlight submits his resignation

Deputy Brandon Keathley (L) is on paid leave after sources say he hit Deputy Nicholas Nunes (R) in the head during an altercation. (Source: Richmond County Sheriff's Office)
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Monday, Feb. 17, 2020

AUGUSTA, GA (WRDW/WAGT) -- One of the deputies involved in a dispute during a fatal shooting response has resigned.

According to the Richmond County Sheriff's Office, Deputy Nicholas Nunes has submitted his resignation, effective immediately.

Nunes was the deputy that was injured in the incident after Sheriff Richard Roundtree said Deputy Brandon Keathley hit him in the back of the head with a flashlight during the Feb. 7 incident.

Roundtree, during a news conference, said the incident boiled down to a "heat of the moment" response as Keathley, Nunes, and a trainee attempted to save the life of 17-year-old DeAngelo Burns.

Burns had been shot in a previous incident and brought to a Circle K on Peach Orchard Road. That's where deputies found Burns and attempted to perform life-saving first aid.

But at some point, things turned heated between Nunes and Keathley, Roundtree said, and Keathley hit Nunes with the flashlight.

Nunes was given a written reprimand over the incident, according to Roundtree, and Keathley was suspended for 30 days.

Nunes released a statement following his resignation.

“I know my worth. I refuse to be mistreated, lied about, betrayed and belittled. I am walking out on my own terms. I put in good work that I know has had a positive impact on this community. Goodbye to my brothers and sisters I’ve made here. Stay safe.

- Respectfully, 5213”

District Attorney Natalie Paine believes further review of the "incident is warranted." She plans to present it to the Grand Jury to see about possible criminal charges.

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