The cops are not required to give this poor dupe the time of day. Remember, the issue here is not following the rules, the issue is a corrupt cop culture that does what it damn well wants when it damn well want too.
Fairfax County Names First Independent Police Auditor
Richard G. Schott, a 27-year veteran of the FBI, was appointed by the Board of Supervisors to be Fairfax County’s first-ever independent police auditor. Photo courtesy of Fairfax County
By Tim Peterson
Monday, February 20, 2017
Richard G. Schott, a 27-year veteran of the FBI, was appointed by the Board of Supervisors to be Fairfax County’s first-ever independent police auditor.
The announcement of Schott’s hiring came at the board’s Feb. 14 meeting. As auditor, Schott will report directly to the board and have numerous oversight responsibilities. Among them, Fairfax County said:
Monitoring and reviewing internal investigations of Police Department officer-involved shootings, in-custody deaths and use-of-force cases in which an individual is killed or seriously injured.
Requesting further investigations if he determines that an internal investigation was deficient or conclusions were not supported by the evidence.
Issuing public reports for each reviewed internal investigation.
Reviewing all resident complaint investigations of alleged excessive or unnecessary force by officers.
Producing annual reports that analyze trends and recommend improvements.
Schott will start full-time, paid work April 17 this year — salary is set at $143,000 — joined by two assistants.
Creation of an independent auditor was a recommendation by the Ad Hoc Police Practices Review Commission for increased oversight of Fairfax County Police.
Another was creation of a civilian review panel. The supervisors approved that body as well, set to be a nine-member group of volunteers who will review complaints of police misconduct or abuse of power.
During closed session Feb. 14, the board was scheduled to review applications and nominees for those positions. However no announcement was made following the closed-door meeting.
Board of Supervisors chairman Sharon Bulova said she was pleased to welcome Schott as the first auditor.
“In this newly established position, Mr. Schott will provide increased accountability and transparency to the Fairfax County Police Department,” Bulova said in a statement.
According to Fairfax County, Schott’s FBI career includes working as a special agent with local law enforcement and training state and local officers, “including legal issues associated with police officers’ use of force and deadly force.”
He also serves as an FBI Academy instructor at Quantico, the county said, teaching new agents about basic constitutional criminal procedure and legal consequences when they employ force.
A Fairfax County Police car was involved in a crash in Falls Church on Saturday that left one person in the hospital.
The accident took place on Feb. 18 in the area of Route 7 and Patrick Henry Drive and involved another car, Fairfax County Police said in a tweet.
Police said the driver of the car was taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries and the officer was not seriously injured.
“The problem lies in what happens after this bad behavior and the problem is that citizens hear no apology, no asking for forgiveness, or pledge from police leaders that this won't happen again because we will fix it and improve. The silence is what's causing the tension and mistrust.”
The name of the Fairfax County cop who shot a man outside his home last month is still unknown.
U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis of the Eastern District of Virginia, postponed a hearing on releasing the officer’s name, delaying the announcement even further. The judge’s decision came after new evidence was presented in court Wednesday.
The evidence “must be carefully examined and investigated before the chief can ascertain whether there’s a credible threat to the officers safety,” court document said.
In 2016, the Fairfax County Police Department changed its policy on naming officer-involved shootings, vowing to release the name of officers involved in deadly shootings no later than 10 days after the fact.
It has been three weeks since the shooting.
Man files lawsuit against Fairfax Co. officer, county, for use of stun gun against him
FOX 5's Alexandra Limon reports.
FEB 10 2017 08:
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - In September 2015, an incident was captured on cellphone video that showed a police officer using a Taser on a man in Fairfax County. The man, who suffers from cerebral palsy, is suing for excessive force in this case.
It all started at a SunTrust Bank in the Rose Hill area of Franconia in Fairfax County. Elton Cansler took a pair of sunglasses from inside the bank and then took off. Police were then called. On the cellphone video, a responding officer uses his Taser on the man.
“His actions there – we are saying is excessive force,” said Cansler’s attorney, Maxwelle Sokol. “He has his hands up, the hands go on the hood of the car, he gets tased.”
Man files lawsuit against Fairfax Co. officer, county, for use of stun gun against him
The original lawsuit was filed this past December. In January, the police chief filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit. This week, Cansler's attorneys have responded.
“On February 8th, we filed in opposition to that motion claiming that we in fact did allege enough facts to proceed,” Sokol said.
Cansler is suing Alan Hanks, the officer involved in the incident, as well as Fairfax County’s police chief and the county.
“They rubberstamped this and said this is totally compliant with our policies,” said Sokol. “So that is the basis for the county's liability – their after-the-fact ratification and endorsement of his actions.”
Officer Hanks was cleared of any wrongdoing days after the incident by the police department. The department released a detailed breakdown of the incident and it said in part that Cansler put his hands in his pockets and he had a knife. It also said he refused commands to put his hands behind his back and resisted arrest.
One of the witnesses who took the cell phone video said at the time after the 2015 incident, “The gentleman just happened to be walking down the sidewalk and the cop pulls up in front of him, tells him to turn over, and as soon as he has his back turned towards him, he tases him. He didn’t see it coming.”
Both sides are still waiting for a ruling on whether the lawsuit against the police department and the county can move forward. It may all be decided at a hearing scheduled in March. The lawsuit against the officer will likely continue because he has not filed a motion to dismiss it.
After policy set, Fairfax Co. police to test body-worn cameras
By Dick Uliano
FAIRFAX, Va. — Fairfax County police are expected to begin testing body-worn cameras later this year, after the police department completes — and the Board of Supervisors approves — a set of guidelines governing the use of the cameras.
Policy must still be nailed down on issues including how best to protect privacy; when cameras are to be turned on and off; when it’s appropriate to redact video and how long video should be retained.
“The goal is to start the pilot project as soon as possible. Whether that is July or sometime after Labor Day will depend on the work ahead,” said Chief Edwin Roessler with Fairfax County police.
The Board of Supervisors Public Safety Committee has set a mid-June deadline for final submission of body-worn camera policy. Once the policy is in place, police will conduct a pilot program with the cameras for 90 days or more.
“My intent is to have two vendors for the pilot project and test and evaluate at two different police district stations,” Roessler said, indicating that two different brands of body-worn cameras will be tested.
While Fairfax County began discussing body-worn cameras in 2014, the program has lagged behind others in the area.
All D.C. police officers are equipped with the cameras, about 900 are in use in Montgomery County and Arlington has a pilot program underway involving 25 officers and sheriff’s deputies. Prince George’s County police say they are implementing the first phase of their program during the first three months of this year.
“I don’t think it’s taking too long. I think the Board and staff are committed to this, and I think we’re doing it right,” said Fairfax County Executive Ed Long.
Fairfax has set aside about $1.9 million to evaluate and then launch its police body-worn camera program.
Fire Police Chief Ed Roessler
Fairfax County Police Still Won't Release Officer's Name in Herndon Shooting
Police Chief Ed Roessler declined to articulate the reason for not releasing the officer's name within 10 days.
By Dan Taylor (Patch Staff) - January 26, 2017 5:17 pm ET
HERNDON, VA — The Fairfax County Police Department has decided not to release the name of the police officer who fatally shot a man in a barricade/hostage situation in Reston earlier this month -- at least not yet.
While county policy is to release the name of an officer involved in a fatal shooting within 10 days unless the department can articulate risk to that officer, there are "several factors" at play that are causing police to withhold the officer's name for the time being, Roessler said in a statement Thursday.
"Because of the complexity of the investigation, I’m not in a position at this point to say whether a risk exists or not, therefore, it isn’t prudent to release the officer’s name at this time," he said.
Roessler added that he expects an update on the assessment in the "near future." The involved officer remains on administrative leave until the investigation is complete.
Fairfax County Police identified 32-year-old Mohammad Azim Doudzai as the suspect in a double-shooting and barricade in Herndon on Jan. 16 that ended in his death.
Police were called to a house in the 13300 block of Covered Wagon Lane at around 2:40 p.m. on that date to a report of two men who had been shot. Once on the scene, they found that a man was inside armed with a gun, and set up a perimeter to isolate the area, according to a report from the Fairfax County Police Department. Police tweeted Tuesday morning that Doudzai was a suspect, but noted that he was not yet confirmed as the shooter.
"Preliminarily, our investigation reveals the suspect fired several shots and started a fire, both inside the home," the report states. "Officers set up a perimeter, isolated the area and began evacuating neighbors. Members of the Crisis Negotiations Team and SWAT were called to assist. They made several attempts to negotiate with the suspect and have him voluntarily surrender."
Get free real-time news alerts from the Herndon Patch.
During the ordeal, officers learned another man was trapped inside and couldn't escape.
"As smoke inundated the house and billowed out the windows, officers heard repeated gunshots," the report continues. "Officers also observed the suspect holding and moving around with at least one knife. Out of concern for the hostage and the suspect, officers made the decision to approach the home."
When they approached the front door, the suspect stepped outside armed with a knife and then lunged at officers, prompting them to open fire. Officers immediately started rendering aid to the man after shooting him, but he was pronounced dead after being taken to the hospital.
Both shooting victims are expected to survive, and the hostage was quickly rescued from the home. No one else was injured during the incident.
Detectives will "continue their investigation to piece together a chronological sequence of events and determine the exact relationship between the victims and the suspect," the report notes. Police ask that anyone with information call 703-691-2131.
Two brothers called 911 around 2:40 p.m. Monday to report that a suspect shot them with a handgun after they were in a fight in a town house in Herndon.
The brothers escaped and drove themselves to the hospital for treatment, and the suspect took a hostage in the house.
Police responded to the scene and while they attempted to negotiate, the suspect set fire to the town house and continued to shoot a handgun.
The blaze grew to a two-alarm fire and the hostage called police and said he couldn’t breathe.
Repeated attempts to coax the suspect from the house were unsuccessful, and the suspect eventually left the house with a knife in his hand.
After attempts to disarm the suspect with a Taser and rubber bullets, an officer shot the suspect dead.
They tasered him and shot him with rubber bullets, had him surrounded and decided the best way to end was to shoot this apparently insane man to death?
Don’t wait it out. Shoot him to death and once again we don’t get to know the cops name who shot the guy.
Something about this isn’t kosher.
Body cameras, mental health part of public safety focus
By Tim Peterson
Fairfax County — This year will see two historic firsts for Fairfax County, its police department and citizens: the beginning work of an Office of Police Auditor and Civilian Review Panel. The auditor will review police use of force cases and internal investigations of those incidents, while the panel will review other citizen complaints of police misconduct and abuse of power.
Both bodies were recommendations from the Ad Hoc Police Practices Review Commission, a panel created by Board of Supervisors chairman Sharon Bulova largely in response to public frustration and anger over the lack of transparency and accountability after the 2013 shooting of unarmed Springfield man John Geer in the doorway of his home by then-Fairfax County Police officer Adam Torres.
A committee appointed by Bulova is reviewing six candidates who topped the applicants list.
For the civilian review panel, invitations to nominate members have been sent to dozens of community groups, including minority organizations, disability services, interfaith groups and others that were part of the Election Process Improvement Commission. Each supervisor may also make nominations. Public Safety Committee chair supervisor John Cook (R-Braddock) said the full board will review all the nominations in closed session Feb. 14.
Supervisor Pat Herrity (R-Springfield) fully supported the auditor position but has been critical of the need for a civilian review panel -- he was the only supervisor to vote against its creation.
Looking ahead at 2017 though, Herrity said “my expectation and hope for both is they’re going to confirm our police department is doing a very good job.”
Randy Sayles of Oak Hill was a member of the Use of Force subcommittee of the Ad Hoc Commission. Sayles spent more than 35 years in law enforcement with the Denver Police Department and Drug Enforcement Administration. He said he is very optimistic both the auditor’s office and civilian review panel will be beneficial to the supervisors, police and citizens.
Sayles said from what he’s seen, “There’s a sense there can be be real improvement and transparency, not just lip service.”
In choosing the members of the panel, Sayles said it’s crucial the supervisors go with people who won’t allow bias to corrupt the review process.
“It’s very important people picked deal with facts, demand facts and make decisions based on facts,” Sayles said, “and communicate those in a way that’s not divisive.
“Try to get a diversity of people,” Sayles said. “But ultimately, pick people who are willing to be fair, no matter what. It can be a difficult thing to do.”
ANOTHER SIGNIFICANT AND CONTENTIOUS RECOMMENDATION from the Ad Hoc commission is the implementation of police officer-worn body cameras. Herrity said the supervisors are set to approve a new pilot program this month.
“They are absolutely important,” Herrity said. “This is something our police department supports, our citizens support. We should go ahead and get it done now.”
Herrity said the estimated cost for getting body cameras up and running on police in Fairfax County is $30 million. The pilot, he said, will last for several months. He’s asked that it include two different vendors and be done at stations in two magisterial districts.
SUPERVISOR COOK said another public safety priority is taking next steps with the Diversion First program, which is set up to prevent people with mental illness or developmental disabilities from going to jail for nonviolent offenses.
Coordinating more with the court system is an important issue, Cook said.
“We really need a sea change in how we think about mental illness,” said Cook, “to recognize it serves a public safety purpose as well to get people treatment. If you just throw them in jail, 80 percent of the time, something else happens, they’re going back in.”
The next meeting of the board’s Public Safety Committee is scheduled for Jan. 31 at 3 p.m. at the Fairfax County Government Center, 12000 Government Center Parkway in Fairfax.
By Antonio Olivo
Virginia’s largest jurisdiction is seeking applicants for a new nine-member civilian panel that will review police abuse cases.
Fairfax County approved the creation of the civilian review panel last month, part of ongoing police reforms in the county of 1.1 million residents spurred by controversy over the 2013 fatal shooting of John B. Geer outside his home.
Fairfax officials are also wading through applications for an independent police auditor who will review police department investigations of cases in which use of force caused a death or serious injury.
In a news release Thursday, the office of Sharon Bulova (D), the chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, said the members of the civilian review panel will be appointed to three-year terms, with one person serving as chairman.
Board appointments to the panel will be based on previous civic involvement, expertise in law enforcement and an applicant’s reputation in his or her community. The board will seek racial and ethnic diversity and will try to appoint members from each of the county’s nine magisterial districts.
The panel will not be open to current county employees, former county law enforcement officers or any of their immediate relatives. Elected officials or political candidates also are excluded from serving on the panel.
• Dec 27, 2016
If you’ve not been following the Fairfax County Supervisors’ actions to implement the recommendations from the Ad Hoc Commission on Police Practices for the last 14 months, let’s briefly catch you up.
The Commission, consisting of 36 members including 10 active or retired police, submitted its final report to the Fairfax County Supervisors in October 2015. The report contained 202 unanimous, transformational recommendations to restore accountability and public trust in the Fairfax County Police Department.
To date, the FCPD and other county offices have implemented, or “implemented with modifications” over sixty per cent of the recommendations. Another 25 per cent were approved in principle, with details, some critical, still to be finalized. Ten per cent more complicated or contentious ones are still under review. Four percent were not implemented.
In sum, this is better progress than many of us expected. Supervisors deserve credit for pushing ahead in the face of often strong resistance from three unions.
Recommendations “implemented with modifications” include some major changes from Commission proposals. For example, the “independent police auditor” lost some independence and had its role in criminal investigations restricted. Proposed reforms calling for more transparency and accountability to the public face stiffest opposition and delay. Examples include proposals to require prompt disclosure of names of officers killing citizens and, to adopt body cameras for all officers. The former was finally approved but with lots of wiggle room, and the latter is still awaiting even a limited pilot test, perhaps in 2017.
A recommendation to encourage the use of less lethal force by requiring all officers to carry Tasers (in addition to guns) is still being debated. While overall percentages look good, a closer look reveals critical, not cosmetic, exceptions.
There is one area where I believe the Commission failed to deliver recommendations likely to lead to change. The Commission was charged with reviewing the composition of the force and making recommendations to improve its diversity. The force is a bastion of white males in a diverse county. Women and minorities are grossly underrepresented, a situation which has not improved in the last several years.
Whites make up only 63 % of the county population, but 83 % of the force (only 1 in 8 of are women); blacks make up 9 % of the population, but only about 7 % of the force; Latinos are 16 % of the population, but are just under 5 % of the force; and Asian Americans make up over 10% of the population, but only 4 % of the force.
The Commission’s subcommittee on Recruitment and Diversity offered only two recommendations to improve diversity:
1) establish a diversity goal for each (of 8) commanders; and,
2) educate and train recruiting and selecting officers about implicit bias.
That’s it, nothing more. The supervisors adopted both verbatim, thus apparently deferring action toward a force composition reflecting the community they serve. Perhaps the board’s number one New Year’s resolution should be to formulate and implement some serious affirmative action in the FCPD.
To see the Commission’s recommendations and implementation progress to date, go to www.fairfaxcountypolicecommission and scroll down to “progress report”.
Happy New Year to all!
By Phillip Niedzielski-Eichner
Monday, December 19, 2016
#I endorse the Connection Newspaper’s recent editorial on the progress Fairfax County has made implementing the recommendations of the Ad Hoc Police Practices Review Commission, on which I had the honor of serving as chairman of the Use of Force Subcommittee. I have had the opportunity to interact with many members of the Fairfax Police Department, ranging from commanders to precinct-level supervisors and officers, all of whom I hold in high regard. We have a fine police department that we are fortunate to have protecting us day-in and day-out.
#While the August 2013 shooting death of John Geer was the catalyst for the commission’s formation, our charge was to assess the Department’s performance against national best practices. As we executed against this charge, we identified both areas for improvement and mechanisms we believed would strengthen the public’s trust and confidence in the department.
#Forming a commission is a time-honored tool by public officials to delay action — or avoid it altogether — since there are always significant barriers to achieving change to deep-rooted organizational practices, traditions and culture. I commend both the Fairfax Board of Supervisors and the Police Department, particularly its chief and command leadership, with ensuring that the Police Commission’s work is not sitting on the shelf gathering dust.
#With my seven-month commission experience and a year’s worth of persistent focus on implementation alongside a dedicated subset of fellow commissioners, I can state without reservation that both the letter and spirit of the commission’s recommendations have been embraced by Fairfax County.
#Fairfax County is well on the way toward approving and implementing the preponderance of the commission’s recommendations. Of note in this regard are the following:
The two-pronged approach to independent Police Department oversight advocated by the commission and recently approved by the Board of Supervisors is significant in light of historical resistance to civilian review of police actions.
The changes directed by the supervisors and Chief Roessler with regard to the Police Department’s openness and transparency are substantial and have already helped regain the public trust lost, in part, because of the dismal handling of the Geer case.
The county’s investment in Diversion First, which provides treatment rather than jail for nonviolent people with mental illness, and broad-based police officer training in crisis intervention techniques, are already paying dividends. Those with mental illness are being treated with greater sensitivity to their affliction, easing the potential for unnecessary suffering, while also reducing the potential for officer injuries and the need for the use of force. Ultimately, this will also help insure a more effective use of tax dollars.
#As important and forward leaning as these steps are, I believe the recrafting and rewriting of the Police Department’s Use of Force policy, also known as General Order 540, warrants particular note. The new Use of Force policy encompasses the commission recommendations, which also incorporated use-of-force recommendations made by the independent Police Executive Research Forum. It gives emphasis to the sanctity of human life, dignity and liberty of all persons as its overarching value or driving theme; and it calls for de-escalation as the strategy of first resort when confronted with a threat rather than the use of deadly force.
#Every member of the Fairfax Police Department, from command leadership to police officer will receive training under General Order 540 by the end of January, 2017. Police officer performance will be assessed against the standards set in this policy, while recruitment and vetting of police officer candidates will focus on the abilities and temperament that comport with the values captured therein.
#While the preponderance of our recommendations have been approved and are being implemented, there are exceptions. For example, we called for all officers being outfitted with body worn cameras, to complement the dashboard cameras now mounted in each patrol vehicle. We believe such cameras will benefit both the public and the police officer. The supervisors delayed consideration of this recommendation for important matters of budget and privacy concerns, which I believe will ultimately be overcome.
#I encourage everyone who is interested to review the Police Commission recommendations progress report at http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/policecommission/progressreport.htm. In summary, you will find that 178 of the 202 recommendations (88 percent) have been approved and are either in process of being implemented or have already been implemented; 15 (7.4 percent) are still under review; and 9 (4.5 percent) have been rejected.
#The evidence so far is that the deep-rooted change of the nature and spirit advocated by the commission is more achievable now than even the most optimistic expected. This noted, I caution that the transformative progress I have observed can only be sustained over time with the continued county and Police Department leadership commitment, the active involvement of the police rank and file officers and most critically continued community participation, monitoring and oversight.
#Phillip Niedzielski-Eichner served as chairman of the Use of Force Subcommittee of the Ad Hoc Police Practices Review Commission, and continues service on the Implementation Committee.
Supervisors outline procedures for bringing on police auditor and civilian review panel.
Tuesday, Dec. 6, the Board of Supervisors voted 9-1 in favor of establishing a nine-member independent police review panel comprised of citizens. Photo by Tim Peterson.
By Tim Peterson
Friday, December 16, 2016
One week after voting to establish Fairfax County’s first Civilian Review Panel for police, Public Safety Committee chair supervisor John Cook (R-Braddock) and Board of Supervisors Chairman Sharon Bulova outlined steps to be taken to fill the nine-member panel, as well as hire an independent police auditor.
Near the conclusion of the Dec. 13 Public Safety Committee meeting, Cook said a letter will be sent to organizations around the county by the end of December inviting them to submit nominees for the review panel. Those groups include minority organizations, disability services, interfaith groups and others that were part of the Election Process Improvement Commission.
Each supervisor will also be able to nominate individuals for the panel.
Cook said all nominations should be received by Jan. 31, 2017. For the next two weeks those applications will be available to the supervisors, who will then review them in closed session on Feb. 14.
On Sept. 20, the board created another oversight entity, the office of the independent police auditor. Both bodies were recommendations from the Ad Hoc Police Practices Review Commission.
The members of the Civilian Review Panel will be volunteers, while the Independent Auditor and staff will be paid Fairfax County employees.
The job posting for auditor has closed, and received many applications, Bulova said. Six candidates have been determined by Fairfax County human resources to fulfill the requirements of the advertisement, supervisor Penny Gross (D-Mason) said.
Bulova said she’s appointed a screening committee for the auditor applicants, including Auditor of the Board Jim Shelton, Connection Newspapers publisher and Ad Hoc Commission member Mary Kimm, Ad Hoc Commission member Adrian Steel, chair of the commission’s Independent Oversight and Investigations subcommittee Jack Johnson, and supervisors Gross and Cook.
Sheriff’s Deputy Involved in
INOVA Hospital Shooting
Authorities said it appeared Jovany Amaya Gomez, 29, was having some sort of "mental episode." The hospital had released him.
By Mary Ann Barton (Patch Staff) - December 17, 2016 2:01 am ET
FAIRFAX COUNTY, VA -- A sheriff's deputy has been cleared in a fatal shooting from Aug. 15 at INOVA Fairfax Hospital, FCPD announced Friday afternoon. Jovany Amaya Gomez, previously identified as Giovanny Martinez, 29, died after he was shot by the deputy. He had approached a police officer earlier in the day because he was suicidal, and the officer had called an ambulance for him, the Washington Post reported. After he was released from the hospital, waiting at a bus stop, he charged at a sheriff's deputy carrying a metal sign post. The deputy shot and killed him, police said.
"Fairfax County Commonwealth’s Attorney Raymond F. Morrogh has informed Colonel Edwin C. Roessler Jr., Chief of the Fairfax County Police Department, that he finds no basis for criminal liability on the part of the Fairfax County Deputy Sheriff involved in the deployment of deadly force on Monday, August 15, 2016, on the campus of INOVA Fairfax Hospital," a statement reads from the police.
The Fairfax County Sheriff’s Office will conduct an administrative investigation in accordance with its standard operating procedures.
Martinez died at Inova Fairfax Medical Campus, 3300 Gallows Road in Fairfax County. Authorities said it appeared Gomez was having some sort of "mental episode." The incident began Monday night, shortly before 10 p.m., when Inova Fairfax Hospital security called the Fairfax County Department of Public Safety Communications (DPSC) to report that a suspicious man with "some sort of edged weapon" was seen at a bus stop outside the “green” garage on the hospital's campus, police said.
A deputy with the Fairfax County Sheriff’s Office, who was in uniform and on assignment at the hospital, responded to the bus stop and located the suspicious man, according to police. Police say the man threatened the officer with some sort of object and the officer shot him. Police did not say what part of the man's body was hit.
Three Fairfax County police officers arrived and began to render aid to Gomez, and personnel from the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department, already on scene at the hospital, arrived and transported the man to the hospital a short distance away, police said.
The man's condition was initially said to be non-life-threatening, Fairfax County Police said. No deputies or officers were injured. Police said that the deputy, who was placed on routine administrative leave, has been with the Sheriff's Office for 18 years.
By The Associated PressDecember 22, 2016 6:33 pm
FAIRFAX, Va. (AP) — A federal lawsuit has been filed against a Fairfax County police officer over the use of a stun gun on a man who says he has cerebral palsy.
The lawsuit filed Thursday says the use of a stun gun on Elton Cansler in September 2015 was “grossly excessive” and “objectively unreasonable.”
Video taken by a bystander shows the officer, who is white, shocking Cansler in the back while his hands are on a police car.
Police have defended the use of force, saying Cansler was armed with a knife and kept reaching for it.
Cansler, who is black, was charged with assaulting a police officer and larceny. The assault charge was later dropped.
A police spokesman referred questions to the county attorney’s office, which didn’t immediately return a message.