Two white officers were fired after the city Police Board ruled that they used excessive force in beating a black teenager with flashlights, and then conspired to cover it up.
The board found the two officers guilty Thursday on administrative charges stemming from the September arrest of 18-year-old Jeremiah Mearday. Matthew Thiel and James Comito Jr. were accused of beating and kicking Mearday and lying about how his jaw was broken and his head bloodied.The officers' version of events "is simply unbelievable," board President Demetrius E. Carney said at a news conference following the board's 6-3 decision.
Mearday was walking with friends when the officers ordered the group to stop, believing one of them was wanted on an arrest warrant. The officers testified that Mearday continued walking, but Mearday said he immediately dropped to his knees.
Thiel pointed his gun at Mearday, testifying that he could not see Mearday's hands and thought he might have a gun.
The officers claim Mearday shoved and punched them as they tried to arrest him.