Tags: George Floyd Protests | Law Enforcement | detroit | police | shooting | rubber bullets | felony

Detroit Cop Faces Felony for Hitting Journalists With Rubber Bullets

a map of michigan with the american flag and the thin blue line for supporting police on it
(Dreamstime)

By    |   Monday, 20 July 2020 10:42 PM

A Detroit police officer was charged with multiple counts of felony assault after allegedly shooting three journalists during a protest in June.

Daniel Debono, 32, was charged by the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office, according to a press release reviewed by the Detroit Free Press and The Detroit News. Debono could face up to four years in prison if convicted.

Nicole Hester, Seth Herald, and Matthew Hatcher were wearing press credentials when they were reporting on the protests in Detroit against police brutality following the death of George Floyd in Minnesota. Debono allegedly fired rubber bullets at three after they identified themselves as journalists and began walking across the street, according to prosecutor Kym Worthy.

Herald was allegedly struck in the wrist by flying rubber bullets, while Hatcher and Hester were both hit in the face.

"The evidence shows that these three journalists were leaving the protest area and that there was almost no one else on the street where they were," Worthy said in the release. "They were a threat to no one. There are simply no explicable reasons why the alleged actions of this officer were taken."

Sgt. Nicole Kirkwood, a spokesperson for the Detroit Police Department, said in a statement to The Hill that following the incident, "an investigation was immediately launched and the Chief made a decision to suspend the officer." 

The case was later transferred to the prosecutor's office for "review and charging recommendations."

"It's important to note that the actions of this officer does not reflect the vast majority of the men and women who have been working the protest for the last 8 weeks," Kirkwood said.

Detroit Police Chief James Craig told the Detroit Free Press officers who are charged with crimes are normally suspended without pay.

"You've got to remember, we have a youthful workforce, and I don't know of a time in the recent past that we've had to deal with violent protesters," Craig said, according to the Detroit Free Press. "So, by and large, this department performed in a spectacular manner."

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US
A Detroit police officer was charged with multiple counts of felony assault after allegedly shooting three journalists during a protest in June.
detroit, police, shooting, rubber bullets, felony
341
2020-42-20
Monday, 20 July 2020 10:42 PM
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