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Investigation Regarding FCPS Arrest

Released on Friday, April 6, 2018
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A Fort Collins officer is under investigation following the arrest of a shoplifting suspect.
On Thursday, March 29, the officer was on his way home after finishing his shift when he heard dispatch air a call for service at Target (105 W Troutman Parkway). The officer, who was in uniform and driving a marked police vehicle in the area, responded to assist with a shoplifting suspect reportedly fighting with staff. He was the first law enforcement personnel to arrive and located the involved parties in the loss prevention office area. For approximately six minutes, he attempted to take the adult female suspect into custody while she verbally and physically resisted. A second officer arrived to assist, and after an additional two minutes, the suspect was taken into custody. In an attempt to gain her compliance during this incident, officers used several less-lethal tools.
A loss prevention employee sustained injuries caused by the suspect. The suspect also sustained injuries during the incident and was transported to an area hospital for evaluation. She was booked into the Larimer County Jail later that day on charges of Theft, Third Degree Assault, Resisting Arrest, and Obstruction of a Police Officer.
Since the first responding officer had finished his shift, he was not wearing a body camera. The second responding officer was wearing a body camera, which captured the last several minutes of the incident. Surveillance footage from the store also captured the full interaction. Loss prevention provided a copy of this video to FCPS as evidence in the prosecution of the suspect.
Per policy, all uses of force are reviewed by the officer’s chain of command. An internal review of the videos raised concerns about the use of force during this incident. Chief Terry Jones proactively reached out to the District Attorney's Office based on concerns regarding the first responding officer’s use of force. Chief Jones then contacted Larimer County Sheriff’s Office and asked them to review the entire event (as an independent investigating agency) to determine if the officer’s actions violated any criminal laws. The officer was placed on administrative leave pending the results of the investigation. An internal administrative investigation was also opened. At its conclusion, the case will be sent to the Citizen Review Board.
Transparency and community trust are high priorities for Fort Collins Police Services, and we hold high conduct standards for all FCPS employees. As this incident is under investigation, further details will not be released at this time. We will keep our community informed as information becomes available for public release.
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