Society

Ex-Minneapolis Cop Charged For Kicking Man (Video)

| by Michael Allen

Former Minneapolis Police Officer Christopher Reiter was charged with felony third-degree assault on March 15 for kicking a suspect, Mohamed Osman, on May 30, 2016 (video below).

The Star Tribune obtained a video and records that appear to contradict the police reports filed by Reiter and another officer, Josh Domek.

Osman suffered a traumatic brain injury from the incident, and says he is unable, to this day, to work and take care of his kids.

The incident began when Reiter, Domek and other cops responded to a domestic assault call.

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The video shows Reiter, Domek and other officers running toward a silver car, which Osman was sitting in. Osman gets out of the car, puts his hands up and kneels down to surrender.

Domek reportedly kicked Osman in the midsection, while Reiter kicked him in the head.

The criminal charge against Reiter says that it was Reiter's kick that rendered Osman "unconscious and bleeding."

Domek wrote in his police report that he came toward Osman "in an effort to push him to the ground to get him in handcuff position. While doing so, I felt resistance from the male, causing me to believe that he was going to attempt to fight as he had just been involved in a violent assault."

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Reiter wrote in his police report: "I could see [Osman] pushing off the ground. I made a split second decision and kicked [Osman] in the face one time with the top flat part of my boot."

However, the Star Tribune notes that Osman does not appear to be resisting arrest or pushing off the ground.

County Attorney Mike Freeman said that "a kick to the face is a use of deadly force, and simply not justified."

Domek, who is still on the police force, was not charged in the nearly year-old incident.

Minneapolis Police Chief Janet Harteau said last week in a statement: "[W]e remain committed to creating a culture of accountability within the MPD. These actions are not consistent with our core values and we take that very seriously."

Reiter's lawyer, Robert Fowler, said the release of the video was "shameful," and added: "I'm not sure where the media obtained this video, but the proper place for people to judge this video, in the context of other evidence, is in a courtroom during trial."

Since 2013, the police department has investigated eight complaints of Reiter allegedly using excessive force, including another incident in September 2014 that was caught on video.

In that instance, Reiter reportedly kicked a gas station worker in the chest. The worker filed a federal lawsuit against Reiter and the City of Minneapolis that is still ongoing.

There have been five complaints filed against Domek since 2013, which includes the Osman incident.

Osman made a plea deal in the domestic violence incident, and pleaded guilty to third-degree assault in January; he faces sentencing on March 23.

Osman's lawyer, Carson Heefner, told KARE that the two cops kicked Osman because of what Osman did to his girlfriend: "They saw her. They saw the injuries, and shortly thereafter they assaulted my client for no reason."

The female victim recalled the incident with Osman in court papers:

He hurt me really bad. He broke my teeth and my nose. We had a dinner together. We had an argument about his wife because she has been calling from a blocked number.

The argument was escalating and he slapped me so hard and choked me so bad and he was punching me. He gave me two black eyes.

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Sources: Star Tribune, KARE / Photo credit: Tony Webster/Flickr

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