Sunday, September 24, 2023
HomeCrimeBismarck Officer Dismissed Following Investigation into Excessive Force Claims; Attorney Asserts Officer...

Bismarck Officer Dismissed Following Investigation into Excessive Force Claims; Attorney Asserts Officer Demonstrated Restraint

A Bismarck police officer, identified as Officer George Huff, has been terminated after an internal investigation regarding allegations of excessive force during an arrest in March. The Bismarck Police Department confirmed Officer Huff’s dismissal on Sunday.

In a statement, the Bismarck Police Department expressed its commitment to upholding the highest standards of professionalism to maintain the trust and respect of the community they serve.

According to the police report, officers responded to a call on March 9 regarding a pedestrian in the roadway at 24th Street and East Main Avenue. The individual exhibited aggressive behavior when attempts were made to detain him. The man was later identified as 63-year-old Keith Erlandson, whose booking photo showed visible injuries, including a swollen eye.

Officer Huff was the first officer to arrive at the scene and used force during the arrest. Other assisting officers reported to the department administration that they believed the force used was excessive. As a result, Officer Huff was placed on administrative leave and did not resume his duties before his termination.

After an investigation conducted by the Bismarck Police Internal Affairs, a Disciplinary Review Board recommended Officer Huff’s employment be terminated. Police Chief Dave Draovitch agreed with the recommendation, stating that Officer Huff had violated several department policies, leading to his dismissal.

Officer Huff had been with the Bismarck Police Department for approximately four years and had no prior disciplinary incidents in his record.

Christopher Redmann, Officer Huff’s attorney, argued that his client’s termination paperwork did not provide a factual analysis of the incident but rather focused on unrelated character details. Redmann claimed that Officer Huff used reasonable force to apprehend a suspect who continuously escalated resistance. He stated that Officer Huff resorted to minimal force to prevent a physical altercation, as the suspect attempted to engage in violent behavior, including trying to grab the officer’s knife.

The Bismarck Police Department clarified that the incident does not reflect the overall dedication and integrity of its officers, and they commended the officers who promptly reported the issue to their superiors to ensure community safety.

The findings of the investigation have been forwarded to the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation for review by prosecutors. At the time of reporting, no criminal charges against Officer Huff had been listed in court records. Redmann mentioned that Officer Huff plans to appeal the termination to the city Civil Service Commission, which handles disciplinary matters involving city employees.

Ashlie is a senior reporter for the TosBos News. She covers live and breaking news from 6 am every day. Ashlie joined the M.E.N. in 2019 having previously worked for Cavendish Press news agency.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisment -

Most Popular

Recent Comments