In October, John Belton, the Union Parish District Attorney said that he would release evidence in connection to Greene’s death to a grand jury. Additionally, the U.S. Justice Department is currently investigating Greene’s death for possible civil rights violations.
Initially, law enforcement claimed that Greene died in a car crash after he resisted arrest and got into an altercation with the officers. According to court records, the authorities said that Greene’s death was “caused by crash-related blunt force chest trauma that resulted in a fractured sternum and ruptured aorta,” and said they used force “for their own personal safety and for the safety of the public.”
In November 2021, a new autopsy rejected the officer’s theory that Greene died from injuries due to a car crash. The new forensic review said that the cause of Greene's death was a series of factors including troopers striking him repeatedly in the head, restraining him at length and his use of cocaine. The minor car cash was not a contributing factor in his death.
When the video was released of the incident, the footage showed officers “kicking, punching and using a taser on Greene before he died in their custody.” Also in the video, Greene yelled, “I’m scared!” while being stunned repeatedly by a white officer.
Audio from the body camera of one officer, Trooper Chris Hollingsworth, reveals a conversation following the confrontation where he says that Greene was intoxicated.
“And I beat the ever-living f*** out of him, choked him and everything else trying to get him under control and we finally got him in handcuffs when a third man got there and the son of a bitch was still fighting and we was still wrestling with him trying to hold him down because he was spitting blood everywhere,” the officer says in the video.
“And then all of a sudden he just went limp,” he continued.
Hollingsworth was to be terminated for violations “regarding body-worn camera and car camera systems, use of force, performance, lawful orders and for conduct unbecoming an officer" but died in a car crash before he could be fired.
The office of Gov. John Bel Edwards and the Department of Justice for the Western District of Louisiana contested an Associated Press report that alluded to Edwards keeping quiet for two years about the facts of Greene’s death.
Edwards’ office said that “neither the Governor nor anyone on the Governor’s staff has ever intervened or interfered in any criminal investigation, including the investigation into Mr. Greene’s death.”
In the aftermath of Greene’s death, his family filed a wrongful-death civil lawsuit against the troopers involved in the incident and their superiors in the department.
Mona Hardin, Green’s mother, believes that the charges brought against the officers is a step in the right direction.
“They need to be held accountable,” Hardin told reporters after the charges were announced. “Because if not, you’re condoning the killing of Ronald Greene. You’re OK with my son being murdered if you just give a slap on the wrist.”