Cop Won't Be Fired for Pushing Man Out of Wheelchair
An Indiana police officer who was caught on tape pushing a man out of a wheelchair will keep his job. The decision by a citizens board came after the police chief recommended Lieutenant Tom Davidson be fired.
Instead, Davidson will be suspended without pay for 30 days, demoted and placed on probation for a year. The Oct. 2013 incident, which was taped by police car dash cam, involved Davidson and 25-year-old Nicholas Kincade.
Here's more on the story from FOX 59 Indianapolis:
Police were called to the area after receiving reports that Kincade was armed with a gun near a charter school. Police didn’t find a firearm and said Kincade had a pocket knife that he carries for protection.
School officials told officers to inform Kincade that he wasn’t welcome near the school. Police told him he could be charged with trespassing and ordered him to leave.
According to Chief Patrick J. Flannelly, Kincade started preparing his backpack and chair to leave as requested. Kincade moved forward and ran over Davidson’s foot, “at which point Lieutenant Davidson pushed Kincade and the wheelchair, causing it to tip over and Kincade to fall out and onto the street,” according to Flannelly.
The nearly 33-minute dashcam video shows the encounter at about the 13-minute mark.
Kincade was arrested on a count of battery on a law enforcement officer and taken to jail by an ambulance. The charge was later dismissed.
An internal investigation found Davidson in violation of Lafayette Police Department policy, specifically unbecoming conduct and response to resistance. Flannelly came to the same conclusion and recommended Davidson’s termination.
The Lafayette Police Civil Service Commission—a group of five citizens tasked with hiring, discipline and promotion within the department—conducted a hearing and found Davidson guilty of unbecoming conduct in a 5-0 vote. In a 3-2 vote, the commission found Davidson was not in violation of the response to resistance policy.
The Merit Board decided not to fire Davidson. Instead, he was given a 30-day unpaid suspension, demoted and placed on probation for a year.