Two Austin officers have been indefinitely suspended after they were caught on camera kicking and stepping on a suspect during an arrest, Austin Police Interim Chief Brian Manley announced on Monday.
Officer Bryan Richter and Detective Steven McCurley were involved in a narcotics-related arrest in July 2017, at Barton Creek Mall. According to a memo, the two failed to report the use of force used when they arrested the individual. However, Air One captured the incident where McCurley is seen in one part kicking the individual and Richter seen placing his foot on the subject's head.
This is not the first accusation of excessive force for officer Richter. Back in 2016, an arrest he made with a local teacher, Breaion King, in 2015, made national news after he was seen in dash cam video pulling her out of her car and throwing her down. King was booked for resisting arrest, but the charge was later dropped.
The initial lawsuit was dismissed, but King's attorney has since re-filed.
"Anytime an officer that has violent tendencies like Officer Richter is removed from his job it's better for our community, we're safer for it. We're better for it," said King's attorney Erica Grigg.
Chief Manley held a press conference Monday announcing a new de-escalation policy. Officers are urged to identify de-escalation techniques. For instance, slow down and if at all possible wait for additional resources to arrive.
Now, one criteria considered in the review process of use of force incidents is whether there were opportunities to reduce escalation and did the officer do so.