Cop Fired For Using Legal Force Which Violated Policy After Suspect Resisted Arrest | MassCops

Cop Fired For Using Legal Force Which Violated Policy After Suspect Resisted Arrest

Discussion in 'Law Enforcement Articles' started by RodneyFarva, Feb 14, 2021.

  1. RodneyFarva

    RodneyFarva Get off my lawn!

    Aurora, CO – The police chief fired Aurora Police Officer Robert Rosen on Thursday for using force on a man who was resisting arrest even though the officer was cleared by the district attorney (video below).

    “Members of the Aurora Police Department have been working tirelessly to rebuild trust in our community and I want to thank those officers who do it right everyday [sic],” Aurora Police Chief Vanessa Wilson said in a statement on Feb. 11.

    “The actions of Mr. Rosen were in direct contradiction of those efforts. The poor decisions he made that day do not meet the high standards that the community and I expect from my officers,” she said.
    The incident occurred just after 7 a.m. on Aug. 10, 2020 at the King Soopers grocery store located in the 6000-block of South Parker Rd, the Sentinel reported.

    Police responded to the store for a man who was violating a trespass order and wouldn’t leave.

    Bodycam video showed the first officer to arrive on the scene had to chase the suspect through the store briefly and then took him to the ground.

    The officer tried to handcuff the suspect but the man remained resisted efforts and kept his hands locked underneath him, the video showed.
    Video showed that the officer waited patiently for backup to arrive, and Officer Rosen was the next officer on the scene.

    “He’s holding his arms underneath him,” the first officer told Officer Rosen.

    The video showed Officer Rosen tried once to pull the suspect’s arm out from under him and then punched him in the side four times to try to get him to release his arm.

    “Give me your arms,” he ordered the suspect. “Give me your arms right now.”
    The suspect continued to resist and Officer Rosen got up off the ground.

    “You’re going to get Tased,” he warned in the video.

    Seconds later, he deployed the Taser against the back of the prone man’s legs.

    “Let go of your arms or you’re going to get it again,” Officer Rosen said in the video.
    The video showed he deployed the Taser several more times as the suspect struggled.

    The first officer finally managed to get the handcuffs on the suspect and then Officer Rosen stood up and put a new cartridge in his Taser, the video showed.

    The man was walked out of the store and turned over to paramedics who took him to the hospital for evaluation and treatment, according to Aurora PD.

    Aurora Police Department Spokesperson Lieutenant Chris Amsler told reporters on Feb. 11 that Officer Rosen did not follow department policy when he was assisting with the arrest, the Sentinel reported.
    Chief Wilson initiated a use-of-force investigation immediately after the incident, and then that was reviewed by the Force Review Board who recommended that Internal Affairs investigate for potential department policy violations.

    “When Officer Rosen arrived he briefly tried to get the man’s arm out without giving any verbal orders,” Aurora police said. “He then escalated the situation by punching the man multiple times in his ribs.”

    “He deployed his Taser a total of five times, for a total of 27 seconds in a two minute period,” the press release said. “During the arrest Officer Rosen never attempted any lesser means of force nor did he make any attempts to deescalate the situation in accordance with Aurora Police training.”

    Investigators also discovered that Officer Rosen had also failed to activate his bodycam during the incident and didn’t document his justifications for each use of force, the Sentinel reported.
    The chief announced Officer Rosen’s termination on Feb. 11.

    Now-former Officer Rosen will not be facing any criminal charges in connection with the incident, according to the Aurora PD press release.

    The District Attorney’s Office for the 18th Judicial District investigated the incident and determined that the officer’s use of force against the suspect was justified.

    Officer Rosen joined the Aurora Police Department in 2017 and was most recently assigned to District 3 Patrol.
  2. mpd61

    mpd61 Retired Fed, Active Special

    SUE The CHIEF!!!!!!!!!!
    Re-write the policy to clarify utilizing SCOTUS and State standards!
  3. NEPS

    NEPS 75th N.H.P.A.

    The truth, uncomfortable to police officers, is that police departments are allowed to write use of force policies that are more restrictive than the standards set out in constitutional law. An officer who acts outside that restrictive policy but within the law may not be criminally convicted or liable for a constitutional tort, but may be disciplined by the department.

    Take note of your department's policies. According to what the article said, Officer Rosen did not (1) try to de-escalate, whatever that may mean under the policy, (2) did not give verbal commands, but went hands on first, (3) did not use lower levels of force than the Taser, though it looks to me that he used distracting strikes, and (4) did not write a report that explained each use of force and his justification for it.

    States also are also allowed to write use of force laws for police that are more restrictive than those set out in constitutional law. In Massachusetts, on December 1, 2021, we will have new legal standards that will apply, at least, to the decertification of police officers and civil suits about police use of force in state courts. Chapter 6E, section 14 in particular, provides specific restrictions on the use of force and requires that a use of force be preceded by "de-escalation" if "feasible." The statute provides a list of examples of de-escalation.

    Take note of this statute. If you have not seen it already, you may wish to review Law Enforcement Dimensions' (John Scheft's) handbook on police reform: "Police and POST." REFORM BOOKLET.pdf (He has a training coming up on February 23, which may be found on the LED site.)

    Whether officers like it or not, this is what will guide use of force decisions by police officers in the near future. The more an officer's actions comply with the statute, and the more carefully an officer can write a report explaining decisions the officer made in terms of this law, the better off the officer will be when facing an agency or POST or court review of the use of force decision.

    And if you are going to say, "Hey, good luck getting police to do their jobs with these standards," well... I'll leave that discussion to others.
    AB7 and RodneyFarva like this.
  4. LA Copper

    LA Copper Subscribing Member

    While I agree this doesn't look like a fireable offense, I can say at least on my department, the totality of this use of force could have been handled much better and the second officer's use of force would have been considered out of policy.

    The common denominator in this one and the 9-year-old pepper spray incident is the officers don't seem to know how to talk to people. Suspects and subjects of radio calls are people too. Why not try talking to them to gain their cooperation. And when talking to them, listen to their response, it might actually be important. A great example of this is the Deputy Dinkheller video when the suspect tells Dinkheller, "I'm a Gosh Darn combat Vietnam vet." We call that a clue in our business.

    In this particular incident, if the officers had listened to the suspect, it sounds pretty evident that he is suffering from some type of mental illness where yelling at him probably isn't going to work, which it didn't. That was evident from what we see in the video.

    Now I realize not everyone will listen, however that doesn't mean we can't try. Sometimes it might actually work and it looks and sounds better to the public, especially with body worn cameras and cell phone cameras all around us. If you don't think that's important in today's society, just take a look at the feedback regarding the 9-year-old girl, pepper spray incident. De-escalation is a big deal nowadays.

    In this case, he didn't have to go directly to punches and Taser drive stun. If talking to him doesn't work, how about just using physical force to pull his hands out from under him. Or use the head displacement maneuver. There was no rush to use that type of force on this suspect. He was only a trespassing suspect who was only resisting arrest by keeping his hands under his body, he wasn't fighting with them.

    We have to act smarter, especially nowadays, considering the microscope our profession is under.
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2021
  5. CCCSD

    CCCSD MassCops Member

    Not having access to hands kills cops.
    LAPD has hundreds of cops two minutes away. 90% of agencies don’t.

    Why are you excusing the suspects actions? Do you KNOW his intent? I sure don’t.
    Solution is to stop responding to all calls and just take a cold report.

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