COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The Columbus police chief said Tuesday she’s fast-tracking an investigation into the case of an officer captured on video apparently kicking a handcuffed suspect in the head.
The officer’s sergeant has been told to work only on this situation, with a report expected within two weeks, Chief Kim Jacobs said Tuesday. The investigation will include a review of the citizen-generated video, along with cruiser dash-cam video and statements from witnesses and other officers.
“We saw something on video that was concerning enough to make sure that we address it promptly, thoroughly, and take the officer out of the fold until we know more,” Jacobs said.
She noted the video is a “snippet” of evidence that will be analyzed along with everything else.
The video taken Saturday shows an officer restraining a man on the ground, when a second officer arrives and appears to kick him in the head.
Columbus police said the officer, identified as Zachary Rosen, has been reassigned to non-patrol duty, pending the investigation.
Rosen self-reported the kick under standard police procedure when force is used, Jacobs said.
Mayor Andrew Ginther called the video disturbing and upsetting.
“It is not consistent with the values and training of the Columbus Division of Police and most importantly it’s not consistent with our values as a community,” the mayor said Tuesday.
Officers were investigating a report of a man threatening to shoot up a house and everyone inside, according to a police report. Court documents identified the suspect as Demarko Anderson.
On Monday, the 22-year-old Anderson pleaded not guilty to charges including aggravated menacing and resisting arrest among other counts. A message was left with Anderson’s public defender seeking comment on the charges.
Police also have confirmed that Rosen was one of two plainclothes officers who fatally shot a man in the city last year.
According to records released Monday, Rosen and the other officer, Jason Bare, told investigators that they shot 23-year-old Henry Green in June 2016 after he opened fire on them, and that they feared for their lives. The two also said in written statements that they shouted “police” before opening fire.
A grand jury last month declined to indict the officers in Green’s death.
Lawyers representing Green’s family say the video offers more proof of what they call Rosen’s “unchecked aggression.” In response, Jacobs said the two cases are unrelated.
Rosen “works in an area that is troubled by violence, and every day goes up there to try to help people,” Jacobs said. “He’s made numerous gun arrests, trying to take guns off the street and I have no reason to believe that there’s any connection other than the fact it’s the same officer.”
Andrew Welsh-Huggins can be reached on Twitter at https://twitter.com/awhcolumbus. His work can be found at http://bigstory.ap.org/content/andrew-welsh-huggins
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