Kids and mentally stable cops...what could possibly go wrong?
Louisville Cop Arrested for Allegedly Assaulting Two Children; Previously Commended for His Work With Youth
Cop had multiple commendations for working with youth. Psychologist says she was kicked out of clinical program after reporting kids's allegations against him.
LMPDJonathan Hardin, a police officer with the Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD), was arrested and suspended without pay, charged with assault, wanton endangerment, official misconduct, and false swearing, stemming from his alleged beating two students at the Olmsted Academy North, an all-boy public middle school (the only one in Kentucky) at which Hardin worked.
Via local TV station WAVE:
Arrest warrants for Hardin allege that he hit one student with a closed fist, knocking him to the floor, and choked another student until he lost consciousness. Both students were 13 years old. The warrants say the incidents were caught on surveillance video.
In 2013, Hardin was commended by the department for his work with the Gentleman's Academy summer program, a joint effort between LMPD and the University of Louisville, which was designed to help students learn conflict resolution. He and a number of other officers with the program received the Distinguished Community Service award from the department.
It gets worse:
Erica Buckner, a psychologist who worked for Gentleman's Academy said she was kicked out of the clinical psychology [sic] program at UofL after she reported students' allegations about Hardin's behavior and the behavior of other officers. She said she was told she had "ruined the relationship" between LMPD and UofL.
Representatives of police officers, union reps and otherwise, often claim drawing attention to incidents of police brutality damages the relationship between the community and the police. If Buckner's claims are true, they illustrate how police can ignore allegations of police brutality for the same reasons.
Hardin is also facing a lawsuit by the family of a boy attending the summer program at the Gentleman's Academy last year. He's only been reprimanded by his police department twice, for missing a court date and losing his badge. He received another commendation praising him for "going above and beyond the call of the duty" for helping to work on a police youth program while off duty. The police department also says it received a letter from a citizen "grateful" for Hardin being there to deal with their "out of control child" with "grace… defusing what could have potentially become a very nasty incident."
Police: Off-duty Baltimore County officer accidentally shoots 14-year-old boy
RANDALLSTOWN, Md. - Baltimore County Police are investigating after they say an off-duty officer accidentally shot a 14-year-old boy at a Randallstown apartment complex where he worked a second job as an armed security guard.
Police were called to 9600 block of Southall Road Monday after getting two calls to the area within a three-minute period. One of the calls was for a shooting in the 9600 block of Button Buck Circle, the other was for the accidental discharge of a weapon on Southall Road.
When officers arrived, they met with two armed security guards who were also off-duty Baltimore County Police officers.
The off-duty officers said they were working as armed security at the Woodridge apartment complex when they got a call from management about people inside a vacant apartment that was under construction, police said.
The off-duty officers told investigators that they saw and heard movement as they walked up to the building. As one of the off-duty officers watched the building, someone walked out onto the balcony. As one of the off-duty officers pointed his gun at the balcony, he told investigating officers it accidentally went off.
The person on the balcony, later identified as a 14-year-old boy, went back inside and ran to his own home nearby.
The teen was injured by the gunshot, but the injuries do not appear to be life-threatening, police said.
The officer who fired his weapon has been placed on administrative status as the investigation continues. The homicide unit is investigating and will send a report to the Baltimore County State's Attorney's Office for review.
Oklahoma City Police Officer Charged With Child Abuse
BY LACIE LOWRY, NEWS 9
OKLAHOMA CITY -
An Oklahoma City police officer has been charged with child abuse.
Investigators said he is accused of shaking and injuring a 7-month-old baby he had been fostering for a month.
Oklahoma City Police Officer Jeremiah Thompson and his wife became foster parents in October of 2014.
In November of 2014, Thompson called 911 from his Edmond home about one of his foster children having trouble breathing.
“This is very sad for everyone involved - the foster family, our agency, the biological family,” said OKDHS Spokesperson Sheree Powell. “This is a tragedy,” she added.
DHS placed a 7-month-old girl and her 2-year-old sister with the Thompsons.
On Nov. 18, Thompson called 911 while his wife was at work and said the infant was having trouble breathing.
He said the girl was throwing up a whole bunch and wasn't really looking at him like she had a hundred yard stare.
Court documents said four minutes and 22 seconds into the 911 call, Thompson said, "I did drop her as well...from a height of 3 to 4 feet...onto padded carpet."
Doctors said the baby's subdural hematoma and extensive bilateral retinal bleeding could not have been caused by a single fall incident.
Doctors said the injuries were likely from a person shaking a baby.
“There were no red flags, no indications that anything like this could have happened,” Powell told News 9.
Powell said the Thompsons passed every background check and certification with flying colors.
“This particular foster parent did that, passed all of his background checks, home study was glowing on the family and also completed all the training,” Powell explained.
DHS removed both foster children from the home and will not place any other children there.
DHS said the baby is now safe, but she has had seizures and increased pressure in her skull from her brain injury.
According to court documents, doctors said the long term effects of her brain injury are unknown at this time.
Officer Thompson has pleaded not guilty to the charge.
He has been with Oklahoma City police for two years and is currently on paid leave while the case is open.
News 9 reached out to his attorney for comment, but have not heard back.
NC police officer suspended without pay for spitting on teen
ASHEVILLE, N.C. — A North Carolina police officer has been suspended without pay for the equivalent of eight 40-hour workweeks after he spit on a teenager.
The Asheville Citizen-Times reported that Asheville’s Civil Service Board upheld the lengthy unpaid suspension for officer Jonathan Collins.
Collins claims he never meant to spit at the 17-year-old last April. He said he was spitting on the street and the boy passed by. The officer appealed, saying the discipline was too harsh.
The board sided with the city that Collins actions were inappropriate, according to WLOS. In addition to the suspension, Collins took sensitivity training classes, wears a body camera and got his final written notice.
The former police chief called Collins’ actions inhumane and disrespectful, according to the paper.
Tucson officer was suspended for shoving UA student
By Caitlin Schmidt
Police officer accused of violently shoving woman, pushing another near UA Read more
A Tucson police sergeant who violently pushed a then-UA student while officers tried to control a large crowd after the men’s basketball team’s loss in the 2014 NCAA tournament, was suspended, newly released records show.
Sgt. Joel Mann was suspended without pay for 80 hours, the department confirmed Friday. Hundreds of pages of documents in the internal review of the incident were released Friday.
The suspension was for two separate incidents, both occurring after the University of Arizona men’s basketball team’s loss in the tournament.
Mann, a 19-year veteran of the force, served his suspension in mid-August after his appeal was denied, according to the documents. Sgt. Pete Dugan, an agency spokesman, confirmed Mann is back on active duty.
Police Chief Roberto Villaseñor said in July that he anticipated disciplining the officer.
On Aug. 11, Mann’s notice of discipline was issued, allowing him seven days to file an appeal, which he did.
In September, Mann notified the department that he intended to file a grievance, saying that the punishment was too severe. He submitted it in December, and it was rejected.
He filed another grievance on Jan. 12, asking that the decision again be re-evaluated. On Jan. 20, the department rejected the second grievance.
“The serious nature of your actions, especially in regard to any lack of perceived or actual threat justifies the enhanced sanctions,” according to the department’s response to Mann.
Mann’s attorney, Michael Storie, said winning a departmental appeal is difficult, but was the only process afforded to Mann under the punishment guidelines. “Why would anyone think that Sgt. Mann would get fair consideration from those who bungled the planning of this tactical response to this event?” asked Storie.
No criminal charges were pursued against Mann. County prosecutors said last year that while Mann was “overzealous,” his actions did not rise to a level that showed criminal intent.
Storie said the county prosecutors’ findings were based on a criminal investigation conducted by the Arizona Department of Public Safety, which concluded Mann “did nothing wrong.”
“Sgt. Mann’s response was not overzealous,” Storie said. “In choosing not to bring charges against Sgt. Mann, the county prosecutors determined that his actions were justified, because if not, he would be charged with assault,” said Storie.
In the first incident, Mann pushed then-UA student Christina Gardilcic over a bench. The shove also was captured on a helmet camera Mann wore.
Gardilcic has filed a $375,000 claim against the city.
Stephen Weeks, Gardilcic’s attorney, said he also intends to file a lawsuit against the police department.
The second incident occurred during the same night, when Mann pushed a young woman out of a chair.
Mami Morita also filed a complaint against Mann.
Reporter Carmen Duarte also contributed to this story. Contact reporter Caitlin Schmidt at email@example.com or 573-4191. On Twitter: @caitlincschmidt