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Columbus Police Finds Kicking Of Suspect By Officer "Unreasonable"

Columbus Police
Zachary Rosen

An investigation by the Columbus Police found that the kicking of a handcuffed suspect by officer Zachary Rosen was "outside of policy" and "unreasonable."

A press release from Columbus Police says that the kicking of the suspect was an "untrained technique" and in violation of the division's Use of Force Directive.

"A review of past discipline decisions involving similar conduct by Division employees will assist in determining whether the actions of the officer warrant deviation of progressive discipline, which could result in a hearing in front of the Chief of Police," the report states.

Rosen was captured on cell phone video kicking Demarko Anderson, who police say was found to be carrying crack and a gun, and then kneeling on him. Columbus Police said that Rosen self-reported the incident, and he was quickly placed on non-patrol duty.

Documents obtained from the investigation reveal that four of Rosen's lower-ranking supervisors believed Rosen's use of force was within policy. And according to the Columbus Dispatch, the president of the local Fraternal Order of Police also said he believes Rosen's actions were justified.

It was Deputy Chief Thomas Quinlan who ultimately ruled that Rosen should be disciplined.

In the report, Quinlan writes that Rosen had based his actions on the belief that Anderson might have been armed.

"If the fear of a weapon and the threat of death were real," Quinlan says, "it makes no sense that Officer Rosen stood around after the apprehension and did not search Mr. Anderson for weapons."   

A review by the division's Division Grievance Section will happen before any decision is made about possible discipline to Rosen.

In March, a grand jury declined to indict Rosen and a fellow officer for the shooting death of Henry Green last summer. Columbus Police said last month that the department's firearms review board was still reviewing whether that shooting was in policy, a process that could take 6-8 months.

Additional reporting by Esther Honig.

Story updated Thursday, May 11.

Gabe Rosenberg joined WOSU in October 2016. As digital news editor, Gabe reports breaking news and edits all content for the WOSU website, as well as manages the station's social media accounts.