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Last July, 38-year-old Christopher Johnson was arrested for allegedly driving drunk on his motorcycle.

While being booked, Harris County, Texas employees told Johnson to stop smiling in his mug shot.

According to a lawsuit, the two jailers then choked him for 30 seconds. Johnson also alleges the jailers and a deputy violated his constitutional right to free speech.

A spokesperson for the Harris County Sheriff’s Office says while there is not a policy against smiling in mug shots, “proper procedure was followed.”

ABC News reported the sheriff’s office released a statement that says in part: “It is not uncommon for detention personnel to assist impaired or uncooperative detainees while taking booking photographs.”

This isn’t the first time the sheriff’s office has been accused of choking a suspect. Two weeks ago, a 28-year-old man filed a similar lawsuit.

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Houston Man Claims Jail Employees Choked Him For Smiling In A Mug Shot  was originally published on