Titusville PD Officer Charged in Death of James Lowery

UPDATE: On June 2nd, Joshua Payne had an Initial Appearance in court. Payne did not appear at court and had an attorney represent him. Payne entered a plea of Not Guilty and requested that the court send the case to Trial by Jury. Payne has 20 days from filing of the case and 30 days from the filing of the indictment in which to file motions to dismiss the information or indictment.

No trial date has been set.

News 6 obtained Payne’s prior disciplinary files and learned he was given a written reprimand last June for driving too fast when responding to a fight call where he crashed into a pole. Officers said he didn’t have his in-car camera activated.

Titusville Police said Payne remains on unpaid leave, pending an internal affairs investigation. That investigation is also why the department said it can’t release much more information — but should be able to release body camera video and more from their investigation within seven days.

Today, June 1st, Titusville Police Officer Joshua Payne was arrested on a charge of Manslaughter in connection to the use of deadly force resulting in the death of James Lowery on December 26, 2021.

Payne surrendered at the Brevard County Jail this morning and was scheduled to post a $15,000 Bond.

Payne was one of several officers that responded to 911 calls of a male attacking a female in the roadway of S. Deleon Avenue. Payne observed Lowery, whose appearance was similar to that of the suspect (it was later determined Lowery was not involved) and attempted to stop him for questioning. Lowery fled on foot refusing commands to stop and discarding a bag of narcotics. Payne utilized his taser to no effect as Lowery broke free and scaled a nearby fence. Payne then drew his firearm and while holding both weapons attempted to scale the same fence, firing a single shot that struck and killed Lowery.

The Brevard Medical Examiner ruled the manner of death a homicide.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement investigated the use of deadly force by Payne and submitted their investigative findings, announced on May 6, 2022. After a thorough review by prosecutors, State Attorney Archer directed the filing of the Manslaughter charge, resulting to today’s arrest.

Manslaughter is the killing of a human being by an act, procurement, or gross culpable negligence, without lawful justification. This includes recklessness or lack of care when handling a dangerous weapon. The statute can also be proven if the defendant used excessive force during self-defense, or defense of another.

The Talk of Titusville will always be free to access.
If you love what we’re doing, please consider becoming a monthly Patreon Supporter HERE.

Titusville Police issued the following statement after the charges were announced

Our department was notified that Officer Joshua Payne has been criminally charged reference the death of James Lowery on December 26, 2021. Payne was immediately placed on Unpaid Suspension pending the outcome of the Internal Affairs investigation. Payne was hired in July of 2020, and he was placed on leave immediately after the deadly force incident in December.

Now that the Criminal Investigation by an outside agency has been completed, and the State Attorney’s Office has issued a criminal charge/arrest, the Internal Affairs Investigation being conducted by the Titusville Police Department’s Professional Standards Division can be completed, and the administrative action can be taken. 

As explained before, we cannot complete an officer investigation and issue any discipline when criminal charges are pending. Based upon the arrest/charges completed, Chief Lau has ordered that it now be completed without delay. 

Once the IA has been completed, all non-exempt evidence in this IA, including body cam of the incident, will be released. We estimate the completion to be 7 days or less from today.

Titusville Police Department Press Release

No trial date has been set in this case.

Public Records

The redacted FDLE Capias Affidavit is available below. Additional records will become available upon completion of the Discovery process in this case.

One thought on “Titusville PD Officer Charged in Death of James Lowery

  1. I found out years ago how “non thinking” the TItusville police were when a group of FIVE of them appeared in my kitchen early one morning yelling “Police”. just appeared in my kitchen, having broken into the house thru the garage. they did this because they’d received an ANONYMOUS call from a person walking by saying that the packages in the doorway were piling us, so they should immediately do a “welfare check”.
    so, on the basis of one ANONYMOUS phone call (from a person who turned out not to even LIVE IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, these five fools were yelling in my kitchen.
    NO masks for covid-19. Nope. wearing their guns? of course they were. standing 1 foot from my face, with no masks at the height of the covid epidemic. and I am 73 yrs. old with a serious health condition.
    idiots. the entire dept seems to be composed of idiots.
    being paid over $40,000 to be idiots for 8 hrs. per day.
    that is my opinion only, of course.

Leave a Reply