The national issue of mentally unstable cops
Arizona State University police officer resigns after caught on video slamming professor to the ground for jaywalking
ASU Officer Stewart Ferrin, 25, quit Monday after an investigation found he was out of line when he arrested English professor Ersula Ore in May. Ferrin was caught throwing Ore to the ground in a dashcam video that went viral.
BY Rachelle Blidner /
Officer Stewart Ferrin, 25, resigned after a video of his arrest of ASU assistant professor Ersula Ore went viral and drew national attention. Ore and Ferrin struggled during Ore’s arrest. ASU English professor Ersula Ore was arrested on suspicion of assaulting a university police officer after the two got into a confrontation when the professor was walking down the middle of a Tempe street, according to court documents.
Officer Stewart Ferrin, 25, resigned after a video of his arrest of ASU assistant professor Ersula Ore went viral and drew national attention..
Ore and Ferrin struggled during Ore’s arrest..
An Arizona State University English professor,Ersula Ore, was arrested on suspicion of assaulting a university police officer after the two got into a confrontation when the professor was walking down the middle of a Tempe street, according to court documents..
.EnlargeSupport Officer Stewart Ferrin/gofundmeOfficer Stewart Ferrin, 25, resigned after a video of his arrest of ASU assistant professor Ersula Ore went viral and drew national attention.
An Arizona State University police officer quit after a video of him slamming a professor to the ground for jaywalking went viral and drew national attention.
Officer Stewart Ferrin, 25, resigned Monday after an internal investigation found he was wrong to use so much force against ASU English professor Ersula Ore in May, according to the Arizona Republic.
Although the university initially stood behind Ferrin, ASU notified him of its intent to fire him after the investigation concluded in January, records show. Ferrin appealed the decision after seven months of administrative leave. He resigned before he could be fired.
"The lack of support, cooperation, and downright bias, coupled with an agenda to ruin my career, has become unbearable and I will not subject my family to this any longer," he said in a letter to the university.
Attorney Mel McDonald said Ferrin was sick of fighting and spending money when he didn't "want to go back there."
University police planned to fire him because he violated numerous policies when he arrested Ore, ASU Police Chief Michael Thompson said.
The incident began when Ore walked down the middle of a Tempe street to avoid construction on the sidewalk, according to the review. Ferrin stopped her and asked for ID. She refused. He tried to handcuff her but she struggled. He threw her to the pavement. When she stood up again, she kicked him in the shin. The encounter was caught on his dashcam.
Ore was charged with resisting arrest, assaulting a police officer and refusing to provide identification.
Ersula Ore filed a $2 million legal claim against Ferrin for excessive force in November.Maricopa County Sheriff’s OfficeErsula Ore filed a $2 million legal claim against Ferrin for excessive force in November.
The encounter drew nationwide outrage, with critics calling Ferrin's actions against the black professor racist. Ferrin claimed race played no role in how he acted.
Ore filed a $2 million legal claim against Ferrin for excessive force, false arrest and rights violations in November, opening the way for a lawsuit.
Ferrin did not have reason to arrest her in the first place because she yielded to traffic and was not required to produce ID, Thompson said.
His "rigid, power-based approach to law enforcement and unwillingness to exercise discretion and sound judgment culminated in you arresting Dr. Ore without a lawful basis," Thompson wrote in a letter. "In doing so, your actions brought discredit to yourself and ASUPD."
Ferrin also misbehaved in other encounters with ASU residents over his four years with the department, Thompson said.
ASU researcher Joseph Reinhardt filed a complaint against Ferrin after the officer grabbed him for crossing the street without following Ferrin's instructions, according to an independent review by Investigative Research Inc.
Ferrin spent "an inordinate amount of time on traffic enforcement" and wrote tickets after supervisors instructed him to issue more warnings, according to the report.
Back in the police academy, he was reprimanded for untruthfulness, insubordination and violating codes, the Republic reported.
"This review was never about a single incident or a single issue," ASU said in a statement Monday. "Law enforcement officers in any jurisdiction are given the tremendous responsibility of helping to keep the community safe. They also are expected to exercise good judgment in the performance of their duties and, when given direction after missteps, are expected to follow that guidance."
Ferrin disputes the university's claims of misconduct and said he "positively impacted many lives" through his job.
"There's nothing in my file that would show I'm bad in any way, shape or form," he told the Republic.
Civil rights activist Rev. Jarret Maupin said he was surprised by Ferrin's resignation and wished he had stayed on the force because he and Ore both acted imperfectly.
"I truly feel that after meeting with civil rights advocates, clergy and dozens of black women, he understands what he did wrong and what he did right," he said in a statement obtained by AZFamily.