iStock/Thinkstock(MINNEAPOLIS) — Minneapolis Police Chief Janeé Harteau announced that she is resigning in the wake of the officer-involved shooting of an Australian bride-to-be.

“[L]ast Saturday’s tragedy, as well as some other recent incidents, have caused me to engage in deep reflection,” Harteau said in part in a statement posted on the police department’s Facebook page.

She continued: “The recent incidents do not reflect the training and procedures we’ve developed as a Department. Despite the MPD’s many accomplishments under my leadership over these years and my love for the City, I have to put the communities we serve first. I’ve decided I am willing to step aside to let a fresh set of leadership eyes see what more can be done for the MPD to be the very best it can be.”

Justine Ruszczyk, 40, who went by her fiancé Don Damond’s last name, was killed by a police officer on July 15 after she called 911 to report what she believed was a sexual assault occurring near her home.

Authorities said officers Matthew Harrity and Mohammed Noor responded to Ruszczyk’s 911 call, but never found a suspect. They were startled by a loud noise and then Ruszczyk approached the driver’s side of the car and Noor, who was on the passenger side, fired his gun through the open driver’s side window, according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety.

Harrity’s attorney, Fred Bruno, told the Minneapolis Star Tribune that it was “certainly reasonable” for the police officers to assume they could be the target of an ambush.

Noor has not made any statements to investigators and has declined to be interviewed, according to Minnesota Department of Public Safety.

Both officers have been placed on standard paid administrative leave pending the investigation. Ruszczyk’s death has been ruled a homicide.

Police have launched an internal affairs review of the officers’ use of force.

Harteau faced criticism for her notable absence in the days following Ruszczyk’s death, but she told reporters Thursday that she was in a remote area, “backpacking in the mountains,” which made it difficult for her to return. She was scheduled to return on Aug. 1, she said.

Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges said in a statement that she asked for Harteau’s resignation.

“I’ve lost confidence in the Chief’s ability to lead us further — and from the many conversations I’ve had with people around our city, especially this week, it is clear that she has lost the confidence of the people of Minneapolis as well,” Hodges said. “In conversation with the Chief today, she and I agreed that she would step aside to make way for new leadership. I asked Chief Harteau for her resignation, she tendered it, and I have accepted it.”

On Wednesday, the Minneapolis Police Department released transcripts from Ruszczyk’s Saturday’s 911 call, detailing what she believed was a sexual assault occurring near her home in Minneapolis’ Fulton neighborhood.

“I can hear someone out the back and I — I’m not sure if she’s having sex or being raped,” Ruszczyk tells the 911 operator, according to the transcript released by police.

Robert Bennett, the attorney representing both Damond and family of Ruszczyk, told ABC News this week “the family wants justice in its largest sense.”

“I think Justine is the last person you’d expect to be killed by police,” Bennett said.

Bennett said that the idea that Justine Damond could have been thought of as a threat is “patently, utterly, ridiculous.”

“If that’s the excuse they want to use to shoot people, I guess they can use any excuse they want, we’re all in danger,” the attorney said.

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety’s Bureau of Criminal Apprehension said Friday that a witness to the shooting has been identified and interviewed, though the agency did not disclose what the witness, a bicyclist, said.

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iStock/Thinkstock(COCOA, Fla.) — Police in Florida are pursuing misdemeanor charges against five teenagers for failure to report a death after authorities say they recorded video of a man’s drowning and didn’t intervene.

The video, taken earlier this month in Cocoa, Florida, about 45 miles east of Orlando, shows a person’s head bobbing up and down in a pond. The teenagers, who are between the ages of 14 and 18 and have not been named by police, are heard laughing and joking in the video, with one of them appearing to laugh and say, “He just died!”

Cocoa Police Chief Mike Cantaloupe said the department learned of the recording last weekend and later reviewed it. Police identified and interviewed the five teens, he said.

Police in conjunction with the State Attorney’s Office determined that charges of “failure to report a death under Florida Statute 406.12,” a misdemeanor, will be pursued, the Cocoa police said in a statement Friday. Police said the charging document, case report and video evidence are being sent to the State Attorney’s Office for review, and a decision about whether the charges will be prosecuted.

“When we initially reviewed this case it was determined there were no laws broken as the teens were not directly involved with the death,” Cantaloupe said in a statement Friday. “Further research of the statutes and consultation with the State Attorney’s Office yielded the decision to move forward with charges under this statute. It’s our belief that this law has never been enforced in a scenario like this, but we feel it could be applicable.”

Cantaloupe added, “Pursuing criminal charges is a way to hold them accountable for their own actions.”

Earlier, Cocoa police said that the five teenagers were not facing criminal charges after the State Attorney’s Office was consulted.

“As horrible as this video is the laws in the State of Florida do not obligate citizens to render aid or call someone to render aid to a person in distress,” Cantaloupe said on Thursday.

The victim, 31-year-old Jamel Dunn of Cocoa, drowned July 9, police said. He was reported missing July 12 and authorities recovered his body July 14 after a passerby reported a body floating in the pond.

Police said home surveillance video apparently captured Dunn jumping over a fence and willingly going into the water. “I don’t think you can ever replace a lost life,” Cantaloupe told ABC News Friday.

He added, “I think what we look at is, the hope that what we do from here going forward, whether it be this charge or some new legislation, that another family doesn’t have to go through this. And that we work with our youth … to instill these morals … I would’ve never believed that somebody could watch somebody in distress and not do anything about it.”

Of the video recorded by the teenagers, Cantaloupe said in a statement Thursday, “There are no words to describe how utterly inhumane and cruel the actions of these juveniles were towards Mr. Dunn. … I want to express my deepest condolences to Mr. Dunn’s family and friends.”

Cocoa Mayor Henry Parrish III released a statement Friday regarding the incident. “It saddens me to the core to watch video shot by a group of kids watching a man drown and doing nothing to help him. There just are no words to describe the lack of conscience within these young people,” he said.

“I also would like to extend my deepest condolences to Mr. Dunn’s family and friends,” he added. “My hope is we all come together to make sure this doesn’t happen to anyone else.”

Parrish said of the decision to pursue charges, “While this in no way will bring justice for what occurred, it is a start.”

“In a case like this we struggle to understand how anyone could be so cold and heartless and then learn that there are no laws in Florida that obligate someone to render aid or call for someone to render aid for a person they see in distress,” he said. “If this case can be used as an example to draft new legislation, then I am committed to move forward to make that happen. More so, may this tragic incident, which has shocked all of us, cause each of us to examine ourselves and our responsibility to one another.”

“I implore the State Attorney’s Office to follow through and file the charges presented by the Cocoa Police Department!” he added.

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Stephen Dunn/Hartford Courant/MCT via Getty Images(CHESHIRE, Conn.) — This weekend marks 10 years since a horrific crime shocked a suburban Connecticut town. In the middle of the night on July 23, 2007, two men broke into a house in Cheshire, killing Jennifer Hawke-Petit and her two daughters and setting the house on fire. Only the victims’ husband and father, Dr. William Petit Jr., escaped alive.

That July day was “the single worst day I’ve ever had in 40 years of municipal government,” Michael Malone, who was Cheshire town manager then and still is today, told ABC News Thursday. “I can still vividly remember that day. It was horrible. It was surreal. I felt like I was sleepwalking.”

Tragedy in Cheshire

The tragedy in Cheshire began when one of the killers targeted Hawke-Petit, 48, who had multiple sclerosis, and her youngest daughter, 11-year-old Michaela, at the grocery store. He followed the pair home unbeknownst to them and later returned to the house at night with a second man to break in, according to testimony.

Dr. Petit was asleep in the sun room when the attackers smashed his head with a baseball bat and then tied him up in the basement.

The attackers next bound Michaela and her 17-year-old sister, Hayley, to their beds, and in the morning, one of the intruders drove Hawke-Petit to a bank to withdraw money.

Hawke-Petit and the intruder then returned to the home, where the mother and her 11-year-old daughter were sexually assaulted. Hawke-Petit was strangled to death, according to testimony. Hayley and Michaela died of smoke inhalation, according to testimony.

Petit, still bound in the basement, managed to free his hands, and hop up the stairs and out the front door, according to testimony.

“My heart felt like it was beating 200 beats per minute,” he later testified at Hayes’ 2011 trial, “like it was going to explode out of my chest.”

Somehow, he said, he crawled, then rolled to a neighbor’s house. Doctors said later Petit had lost as much as seven pints of blood. He said his neighbor didn’t even recognize him at first because he was so bloody.

Police surrounded the area, but Komisarjevsky and Hayes were still able to flee the scene. The men were caught on the street.

In the aftermath, authorities faced criticism for not rushing into the house during the ordeal, but “police did what they were trained to do,” Malone told ABC News Thursday. A police captain said at trial that standard procedure was followed.

“Still to this day some people blame us, blame the police,” he said, “and they do it in a very hateful way … with profanity-laced hate email.”

A town recovered and giving back

Now, 10 years later, the town of Cheshire has “really fully recovered and put this behind them,” Malone said. “But [the town] has never forgotten it because as a result of this tragedy, a couple of pretty significant charitable organizations have sprung up.”

One of those organizations is Cheshire’s Lights of Hope, started by Cheshire resident Jenifer Walsh and her husband. Walsh told ABC News earlier this week that after the tragedy “people in the town were so devastated by it and everybody wanted to help,” so she and her husband hoped to bring the town together.

Walsh said the purpose of Cheshire’s Lights of Hope, which hosts an annual event that places luminaries on each street in town, is to bring people together so neighbors know each other.

“The neighbors of the Petits didn’t know this was going in the middle of the night on their street,” she said. “Half the time everyone is so busy in their own little world … you just wave to your neighbors, you don’t even know your neighbors.”

Each of the town’s streets participates in the event every year, lining the roads with lights, Walsh said.

Malone said the sight of the luminaries is “incredible” and called them a “reminder of hope and the message that Dr. Petit had presented when we had a memorial service for his family.”

According to the Hartford Courant, Petit said at an emotional memorial days after the killings, “Help a neighbor. Fight for a cause. … Love your family.”

Malone said Cheshire’s Lights of Hope truly has fought for a cause as Petit wanted by providing “financial support for so many nonprofits in this town, many in the name of the Petits.”

The first year after the tragedy, Cheshire’s Lights of Hope raised money to help the Petit family, but the organization has since become a nonprofit, turning its focus away from the crime and toward the needs of the town, Walsh said. The organization donates to town needs including social services, the food pantry and scholarships, Walsh said, with some money still going to the Petit family.

“Some people think we do it every year because it’s for the Petits … but it’s not really about that anymore,” Walsh said. “It’s focusing back on the whole town, which is what Dr. Petit wanted.”

A survivor moves forward

Komisarjevsky and Hayes were convicted in the killings and are serving life in prison. Outside the courthouse after Hayes’ guilty verdict in 2011, Petit said of his decision to attend court throughout the trial, “if your family was destroyed by evil I think that you would all try to do the same thing and be there for your family. It’s the one thing that you can do.”

“There is some relief,” Petit said of the guilty verdict, “but my family is still gone. It doesn’t bring them back. It doesn’t bring back the home that we had.”

“We did our best to keep our faith in God that justice would be served,” he added.

After the tragedy Dr. Petit re-married, and he now has a son with his wife, Christine Petit, whom he met while she was volunteering for his charity, the Petit Family Foundation. The organization aims to “raise and distribute funds to fulfill our mission to help educate young people especially those with interests in science, to help support those with chronic illnesses, and to help protect those affected by violence,” according to its website.

Last year, Dr. Petit was elected to the Connecticut House of Representatives. The Petits declined to comment for this report.

Malone said Dr. Petit has “been an inspiration to the community. And so I think that, combined with the Lights of Hope and also The Petit [Family] Foundation, [are ways for] people to remember, to move on also in their own way, to try to help some organizations that Dr. Petit feels is in keeping with the spirit that he tried to create when he gave his speech.”

Malone said these organizations “really helped the people of the community move behind this. It certainly created a tighter community. And it’s also a reminder to people just how horrible this senseless tragedy was and what he had to go through and what his family went through. Because sometimes we all get caught up in how it affected us and it’s important to stop and remember that they are the ones that suffered the loss and the tragedy. And we have to remember them.”

Malone said, “While the town has moved on, every year we do take time out,” either around the July anniversary or the holidays, as “a way to remind the community of this really sad event and to remind everyone of the sense of hope that Dr. Petit inspired in everyone when he spoke at the memorial service.”

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iStock/Thinkstock(COCOA, Fla.) — Five teenagers won’t face criminal charges after they recorded video of a man’s drowning and didn’t intervene, a Florida police chief said.

The video, taken earlier this month in Cocoa, Florida, about 45 miles east of Orlando, shows a person’s head bobbing up and down in a pond. The unidentified teenagers are laughing and joking in the video, with one of them appearing to laugh and say, “He just died!”

Cocoa Police Chief Mike Cantaloupe said in a statement Thursday that the police department learned of the recording last weekend and reviewed it. Police identified and interviewed the five teens, he said.

Police have not named the juveniles.

“The State Attorney’s Office was consulted regarding what, if any criminal charges could be applied in this incident,” Cantaloupe said, adding, “As horrible as this video is the laws in the State of Florida do not obligate citizens to render aid or call someone to render aid to a person in distress.”

The victim, 31-year-old Jamel Dunn of Cocoa, died of drowning, the medical examiner ruled, police said, adding that they recovered his body July 14.

“There are no words to describe how utterly inhumane and cruel the actions of these juveniles were towards Mr. Dunn,” Cantaloupe said. “I want to express my deepest condolences to Mr. Dunn’s family and friends.”

Cantaloupe added, “Regardless of the circumstances surrounding his decision to enter the water that day, there is absolutely no justification for what the juveniles did. As law enforcement officers we are sworn to uphold and enforce the laws. Unfortunately there are no laws in Florida that apply to this scenario. Perhaps this case may be what’s needed to pass new laws. As chief of police there are times when I wish I could do more. But I’m a firm believer in that good will always win over evil. It may not come in our life time, but there will be justice.”

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STEPHEN MATUREN/AFP/Getty Images(MINNEAPOLIS) — The attorney representing both the fiancé and family of the Australian bride-to-be who was fatally shot by a Minneapolis Police Department officer on Saturday says “the family wants justice in its largest sense.”

Justine Ruszczyk, 40, who went by her fiancé’s last name, Damond, was killed by a police officer on July 15 after she called 911 to report what she believed was a sexual assault occurring near her home.

“I think Justine is the last person you’d expect to be killed by police,” Robert Bennett, the attorney representing Justine Damond’s family and fiancé, Don Damond, told ABC News.

“Of the cases that I’ve been involved in over the years she doesn’t fit any of the patterns,” Bennett, who represented the family of Philando Castile, a black man who was fatally shot by Minnesota police in July 2016, said. “Her life’s intersection with the police is totally bizarre.”

Authorities said officers Matthew Harrity and Mohammed Noor responded to Justine Damond’s 911 call, but never found a suspect. They were startled by a loud noise and then Justine Damond approached the driver’s side of the car and Noor, who was on the passenger side, fired his gun through the open driver’s side window, according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety.

Harrity’s attorney, Fred Bruno, told the Minneapolis Star Tribune that it was “certainly reasonable” for the police officers to assume they could be the target of an ambush.

Bennett said that the idea that Justine Damond could have been thought of as a threat is “patently, utterly, ridiculous.”

“If that’s the excuse they want to use to shoot people, I guess they can use any excuse they want, we’re all in danger,” the attorney said.

Bennett also called it “inexplicable” that there was no video or audio from the officer’s body cameras, a sentiment echoed by Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges, who told ABC News earlier this week that a “key question” for investigators was why the officer’s body cameras were not turned on when Justine Damond was shot and killed.

Minneapolis Police Chief Janeé Harteau said in a news conference Thursday that Justine Damond “didn’t have to die.” She added that Mohamed Noor, the officer who shot Justine Damond, has not made any statement to investigators.

Bennett said the “strangest part of the case,” was that “someone so good, so peaceful, so pacifistic, gets shot by a police officer in her pajamas, in her ally, in a good neighborhood in south Minneapolis.”

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ABC News(NEW YORK) — The father and sister of Ron Goldman said they found the decision to grant O.J. Simpson parole “very disappointing.”

“It was shocking,” Kim Goldman, sister of Ron Goldman, said Friday on ABC News’ Good Morning America about a Nevada parole board’s granting Simpson parole for a 2007 botched robbery. “I think I expected that [Simpson] was going to come in with a script– ‘I did these crimes, I’m so sorry, I’m remorseful, I know that there was a gun in the room.'”

Kim Goldman and Ron’s father, Fred Goldman, spoke to GMA Friday about their reactions to the Thursday hearing and Simpson’s comments to the parole board.

“I thought he was going to follow what I thought was going to be a very strategic plan for the day and then he went off-script,” Kim Goldman said. “He became exactly who he normally is, and I started to panic a little and obviously like everybody else we watched them unanimously willing to release him and it was very disappointing.”

The Goldmans said Thursday on GMA that they do not expect to ever see justice for the 1994 killing of their family member, Ron Goldman.

Simpson is expected to be released as early as Oct. 1.

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ABC News(LOVELOCK, Nev.) — O.J. Simpson is now in protective custody at Lovelock Correctional Center in Nevada, having been moved to a separate part of the prison and removed from the general population, according to Nevada Department of Corrections spokesperson Brooke Keast.

Keast confirmed to ABC News Friday that the former football star has been removed from the general prison population as a precautionary measure, due to his notoriety and the attention given his parole hearing Thursday.

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iStock/Thinkstock(MINNEAPOLIS) — Hundreds of people gathered Thursday night at the Minneapolis site of Justine Damond’s fatal shooting, where they held a vigil before marching to a nearby park to continue their remembrance of the Australian expatriate.

Damond, 40, called 911 on July 15 to report a suspected sexual assault outside her home. Once two officers — identified as Matthew Harrity and Mohamed Noor — arrived at the house, she approached the driver’s side of the squad car, just after Harrity heard a loud sound near the car, according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety. Noor, who was sitting in the passenger seat, then fired his weapon through the open driver’s side window, the Minnesota Department of Public Safety said.

Damond was pronounced dead at the scene.

A large crowd gathered outside Damond’s home, including Valerie Castile, the mother of Philando Castile, an African-American man who was shot and killed by a police officer one year ago, according to ABC affiliate KSTP-TV.

The crowd stood silently and hugged each other, while one speaker said, “We gather here before you in our heartbreak, in our longing for healing.”

After congregating at the home Damond shared with her fiance Don Damond, the crowd marched to Beard’s Plaissance Park on Lake Harriet. Along the way, marchers stopped traffic at some intersections for several minutes, KSTP reported.

One female march participant told KSTP, “I wanted to participate in a peaceful march against what’s not right. I would definitely call a friend or a neighbor before I would call the police now.”

While many in the crowd spoke about seeking justice, they tempered their message with that of peace and love.

“She lived a life where she would be right here with us,” said Sharon Sebring, Don Damond’s mother. “I would be serving no purpose if I spoke on behalf of the family with hate or anger, because our mission is to serve her purpose.”

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ABC News(CARSON CITY, Nev.) — O.J. Simpson’s defense attorney Malcolm LaVergne quipped with his client during Simpson’s parole hearing Thursday at the start of the closing remarks.

When asked by the judge to begin their last remarks, LaVergne mentioned that he had an undated letter from Simpson to Las Vegas Assemblyman Ozzie Fumo.

When LaVergne couldn’t find the letter, he looked at Simpson and asked in front of the commissioners, “Did you take the the letter?”

“I can’t find it now,” LaVergne said.

LaVergne then read the letter to the board, estimating it to have been written within the last nine months. In the letter, Simpson congratulated Fumo for his new position as a state legislator.

LaVergne then argued to the board that Simpson’s letter didn’t ask for special treatment or an early release, but instead showed how Simpson wants to help other inmates have “a better life.”

Simpson, 70, faced a parole board on Thursday after nine years in prison for committing robbery in Las Vegas.

In 2007, he was arrested after he led a group of men into a hotel and casino to steal sports memorabilia at gunpoint, contending it belonged to him.

During the hearing, Simpson said he takes “full responsibility” for his actions.

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Ben185/iStock/Thinkstock(BALTIMORE) — Bodycam footage allegedly shows a Baltimore police officer tampering with evidence by planting what appears to be drugs, according to the Maryland Office of the Public Defender.

The video was taken on January 24 when three police officers were searching for drugs in a yard filled with debris, Baltimore Deputy Police Commissioner Jason Johnson said in a press release Wednesday.

The footage purports to show one of the officers hiding a bag of drugs in a can and then later “finding” the drugs, while two other officers “look on and take no action,” the public defender’s office said in a press release.

The officers were doing surveillance in the area when they observed an individual in jeans and a hooded sweatshirt engage in behavior that was “likely to be a drug transaction” when he went into and alley and later emerged, Johnson said. The officers also observed another individual step into the alley and emerge before getting into a blue car and driving away.

Police say they later stopped the individual who got in the car, and he turned in gel capsules of what police believed to be heroin. Another officer arrested the man in the hooded sweatshirt in a convenience store, and found him to be in possession of marijuana and gel capsules of suspected heroin, Johnson said.

Officers then went to the debris-filled yard where they were led to believe more heroin was stashed, after receiving information from the man involved in the traffic stop, Johnson said. While searching the yard, the officers found a bag of 25 pills of suspected heroin that was knotted at the top, indicating that there may be another stash — in a bag that was not knotted — where the drug dealer could more easily retrieve the drugs, Johnson said.

During the press conference, Johnson showed reporters four separate videos, which he said “depict the incident in greater totality.” The first and second videos showed the traffic stop of the person who drove away, while the third video showed the man in the hooded sweatshirt, who police believe to be the drug dealer, being arrested at the convenience store. The fourth video showed the extensive search of the yard filled with debris.

The last video “sort of depicts what seems to be the discovery of a second bag of heroin, but in the early part of the video, it’s clear that that bag had actually been placed there by the police officer,” Johnson said.

“I think it’s fair to say the video purports to be the first discovery of that second bag containing heroin, but it’s clear that, in fact, is not the first discovery of that particular bag,” Johnson said. “And, of course, that’s the video that we have all seen.”

Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Davis said investigators are looking into the “possibility” that the officers “replaced drugs that they had already discovered in order to document their discovery with their body-worn cameras on.”

No conclusions have been reached, Davis said, calling the allegations made by the public defender’s office “as serious as it gets.”

“If people need to be held accountable, they will be held accountable,” Davis said.

In a statement, Melba Saunders, director of communications for the Office of the State’s Attorney for Baltimore City, the prosecutor’s office “immediately took the proper steps” to dismiss the case once the suspect’s defense attorney raised concerns about the body cam footage.

“Upon notification of this troubling footage, our office immediately implemented established protocols to not only refer this matter to the internal affairs division of the Baltimore Police Department but began identifying active cases involving these officers,” Saunders said.

The video has no sound for the portion where the evidence was allegedly planted, which suggests the sound was turned on shortly afterward, the public defender’s office said.

“Body cameras have an important role to play in the oversight and accountability of police officers but only if they are used properly and the footage is taken seriously,” said Debbie Katz Levi, head of the Baltimore Public Defender’s Special Litigation Section. “Officers should not be able to decide when to turn the cameras on and off, and footage like what was presented here needs to result in immediate action by the State’s Attorney and the Police Department.”

The suspected drug seizures from the two individuals resulted in at least one criminal arrest, the public defender’s office said. An assistant public defender who is representing the person facing drug charges in the incident forwarded the bodycam video to the state attorney’s office last week, the public defender’s office said.

The public defender’s office said that while the prosecutor’s office dropped the charges in the case, the officers involved are still witnesses in other active cases that are currently being pursued for prosecution in Baltimore City Circuit Court.

The officer who the public defender’s office says planted the drugs is a witness in about 53 active cases, the public defender’s office said.

“Officer misconduct has been a pervasive issue at the Baltimore Police Department, which is exacerbated by the lack of accountability.” Levi said. “We have long supported the use of police body cameras to help identify police misconduct, but such footage is meaningless if prosecutors continue to rely on these officers, especially if they do so without disclosing their bad acts.”

One of the three officers has been suspended and the other two police officers are on non-public contact police administrative duty, David said.

The Baltimore City Office of the State’s Attorney did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment. ABC News could not immediately reach the officer allegedly shown tampering with evidence in the video. It is unclear if he has retained an attorney.

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