York, Maine — Town officials released a video footage late Wednesday showing that York police officers used the K-9 to subdue local pediatrician Stephen Brennan while transportation was stopped more than two years ago. released.
The video was released by a Brennan lawyer and a client. $ 325,000 Settlement Agreement With the town Patrol Man Jonathan Rogers, Released the dog at the encounter on September 20, 2019.
In a joint statement released with the footage, Yorktown Manager Steve Burns and Deputy Police Chief Owen Davis said Rogers “just did his job to keep York in a safe place.”
Brennan was 63 years old at the time of the incident and ran Yorkids Pediatrics. Brennan suffered multiple injuries, including a dog bite that his lawyer said required months of follow-up and wound care.
What the dash cam reveals
The 21-minute video released in response to a public record request from the Seacoast Media Group includes audio and dashboard camera video. According to Burns, no camera was worn during the encounter.
Rogers pulled Brennan, who allegedly flashed his high beams. The video shows Brennan getting out of the car before the Rogers cruiser stopped completely.
As Brennan was walking towards the police car, Rogers shouted at him to raise his hand. Brennan responded at first, but he continued walking while Rogers shouted three times to stop him.
Brennan raised his hand, stopped for a moment, then dropped his hand and returned to his car. Rogers left the cruiser and approached Brennan, telling him to stop moving. Rogers pulled his gun and pointed it at Brennan.
Brennan turned to Rogers again. Rogers repeatedly warned that if he didn’t look back and obey, he would hug the K-9.
After Rogers told Brennan six times to get to the ground, Brennan knelt down. Rogers told Brennan to reach the ground again when K-9 ran towards Brennan and knocked him to the ground.
It’s been less than 40 seconds since the Rogers police car stopped on the scene before his K-9 was seen in a video running in Brennan.
Previous story: York pays a pediatrician $ 325K after being attacked by a police dog during a minor traffic outage
While Brennan was standing on the ground with a police dog, Rogers told him to return to the ground and put his hand behind him. Brennan rolled into his stomach as the dog appeared to continue to bite his paw. At the same time, Rogers told him to stop resisting Brennan.
Rogers stood at the top of Brennan, but K-9 continued to conquer him. Rogers eventually pulled the dog away from Brennan. Brennan stayed on the ground with his hands behind him.
The K-9’s engagement with Brennan lasted about 80 seconds.
Several police officers and ambulances arrived to assist Rogers and tend to injure Brennan. Rogers told Brennan that he had been arrested for refusing to file an arrest or detention.
Rogers can be heard talking to other police officers about Brennan’s injury.
“He looks like I’ve beaten f — ing s — from him. Rogers said,” I didn’t really do it. I just let go of the dog. “
The emergency medical technician told Rogers that one of Brennan’s eyes was bleeding and he couldn’t see it from it. Rogers told EMT that he struck Brennan in the area where his eyes were bleeding.
When the ambulance arrived 13 minutes after the interaction, Rogers announced that Responder Brennan’s leg had been bitten and bloody.
The interaction between Brennan and the police, K-9 and EMT lasted about 16 minutes before Brennan boarded the ambulance.
Brennan was charged with refusing to file an arrest, but the charges were dismissed six months later, according to York County District Attorney Kathryn Slattery.
According to Slutary, DA’s office is not involved in disciplinary action against police officers.
Next time I have a chance to do better
At the time, York police said Rogers’ response was justified because Brennan was an invader.
Brennan’s lawyers Shaheen and Gordon’s Alexander Spadinger said the reconciliation revealed that the first attempt by York police to portray Brennan as an invader was not true. They said Brennan was in the process of landing to surrender when the K-9 was released. The decision to release a trained police dog was neither rational nor necessary, Spadinger added.
Brennan suffered multiple injuries as a result of a dog bite and required months of follow-up and wound care treatment, including puncture wounds on both legs and left arm, chest wall injuries, and left eye trauma. statement.
“As a result of this incident, Dr. Brennan first turned to escalation training when the York Police Department then faced this situation when one of its officers faced this situation, and then the physical force. “Spadinger added.
In contrast, Mr Burns said the settlement was decided by the town’s insurance company and did not reflect cheating by York police.
“The settlement is because the insurance company has insurance to direct everything related to their financial risk. They make a decision and pay the settlement. The town pays it. No, “Burns said. “There is no cost to taxpayers unless the premium goes up.”
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Rogers is still working for York police, Burns said. Burns refused to comment on whether the town believed the settlement was fair.
According to Burns, the case between Rogers and Brennan triggered an internal investigation by York Police Command that did not lead to disciplinary action.
Rogers was told not to use such vulgar language, but that was it, Burns said.
According to Burns, no changes have been made to YPD’s power and dog policy in response to this incident.
The town still denies cheating
Deputy Police Chief Owen Davis said the York police conducted a “thorough investigation” and Rogers’ actions followed the operating procedures of all departments “to manage the situation while ensuring the safety of both parties.” He said he discovered that he had used the “appropriate amount of force needed.”
Davis said Rogers used a number of verbal orders to exacerbate the situation and refused to follow Brennan, causing Rogers to adopt “non-lethal forces” to detain Brennan. Stated.
According to Davis, three witnesses to the event came forward and issued a statement in support of Rogers’ actions.
In a statement, Burns said police were doing a difficult job.
“I’m often told that I’m doing a difficult job and people wouldn’t want my job. I look at the job of a police officer … and I think my job is easier than it is.” Said Burns. “Police officers are kind and considerate and provide residents with all kinds of public services, but they are always ready to take action to keep our community safe.”
Police work is neither cute nor fun, Burns added, and they are often asked to make life-changing decisions on the spot.
“But their work is absolutely necessary to protect the quality of life we enjoy in the community,” Burns said.
Despite the settlement, Cassia S. Park, a lawyer representing the town and Rogers, continued to deny Sergeant Rogers’ misconduct. Brian Curtin and York Police Station.
“Federal courts did not find the first report by Sergeant Brian Curtin to be false,” Park said. “Federal courts have not found anything in this case. No fraud was found on the part of Officer Rogers, Town or any other York officer. The parties decided to mediate the case and reached a settlement. . Acceptance of fraudulent activity or liability.
“This wasn’t a regular traffic outage,” Park said. “Dr. Brennan jumped out of the car before Rogers stopped the cruiser and started heading for him. He didn’t know the identity of the driver at the time, nor did he know why he jumped out of the car. If he was armed, or if there was someone else in the car. Three civilian witnesses came forward explaining that Dr. Brennan was the invader he was encountering. . “
Editor’s Note: This article was updated on Thursday, January 13th with comments from York County Attorney Kathryn Slattery.
This article was originally published in Portsmouth Herald: Video shows York ME Police K-9 crushing pediatrician Stephen Brennan