Houston Police Chief Charles McClelland Wednesday fired the four officers involved in an alleged beating of a teenage burglary suspect March 23, which was videotaped by an Uncle Bob’s Self Storage video surveillance camera.
Andrew Blomberg, Phil Bryan, Raad Hassan and Drew Ryser were indicted by a Harris County grand jury Wednesday on charges of official oppression. Bryan and Hassan also were charged with violating the civil rights of a prisoner. Both charges are Class-A misdemeanors, punishable by up to a year in jail and a $4,000 fine.
McClelland defended the misdemeanor charges against critics, who said the officers should face felony charges, claiming he had to follow the state statute.
The incident came to light after Uncle Bob’s Self Storage employees noticed damage to the facility’s perimeter fencing. As they began reviewing video surveillance to determine the cause, they noticed the cameras had recorded the end of a police chase, the arrest of Chad Holley, then 15, and the alleged beating of Holly. Uncle Bob’s parent company sent a copy of the video to the Houston Police Department, which sparked the investigation.
The four officers are free on $1,000 bonds and scheduled to appear in court in July 23 to enter their pleas.
Source: Houston Chronicle, Chief Defends Level of Charges Against Officers