Sunday, January 29, 2017

FORT WORTH COP BODYCAM RELEASED, CHARGES DROPPED AGAINST CRAIG FAMILY


Photo from Dallas Morning News
Shortly after the bodycam footage was leaked to the public, Fort Worth Police Chief Joel Fitzgerald announced that the criminal charges against the three Craig family would be dropped and no charges will be filed against the arresting officer.  However, Craig's neighbor, Itamar Vardi, now faces a misdemeanor assault charge.

On December 21, 2016, Officer William Martin responsed to a call by Jacqueline Craig complaining that a neighbor had choked her 8-year-old son for allegedly littering on his property. Instead of arresting the neighbor, who is white, for assaulting the minor, Officer Martin, who is also white, admonished Craig, who is a Black American, to teach her son not to litter.

When Craig complained about the officer's inappropriate response, Martin arrested her and her two teenage daughters, including the one who filmed the tense encounter.

According to DallasNews.com
The Fort Worth Police Department found that Martin had violated state and department policies by using excessive force, being disrespectful and failing to thoroughly investigate an offense. Fitzgerald suspended Martin for 10 days without pay. {Martin is currently appealing the suspension.]
Police said earlier that they had forwarded the case to prosecutors to review in its entirety. But the Tarrant County district attorney's office won't investigate the officer, said spokeswoman Sam Jordan.
 "It's being handled as an internal issue, as a policy violation, not a crime," Jordan said Thursday. 

The disturbing bodycam footage was given to the Craig family's attorney, who shared it to the news outlet. Craig family have accused Martin of displaying racist behavior and using excessive force and may file a federal lawsuit. 


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