Rhode Island cop suspended for hitting and kicking unruly suspect in handcuffs
A Rhode Island police officer was suspended for a year without pay after he admitted to hitting and kicking a handcuffed man who spat at him and taunted him.
Officer Richard Ramirez, an eight-year veteran, has been suspended with pay since the July 14 incident.
Ramirez and other officers had pursued the man for hours as he sped on an off-road motorcycle through streets and sidewalks of Providence.
The motorcyclist, 22-year-old Jose Moreno, finally stopped after his bike chain broke and taunted Ramirez.
“I don’t give a [expletive], officer,” Moreno said, according to the police report. “I am a good driver. I could have gotten away from you, you could never catch me and when I do get out of jail, I will be doing this again.”
Police said Moreno then spat at Ramirez, who smacked the suspect on the back of the head and then kicked him when he laughed.
An internal investigation found that Ramirez had “inappropriately dealt with a defendant,” and the case was handed over to the U.S. attorney’s office as a possible civil rights violation.
Federal authorities, however, declined to investigate and did not charge Ramirez.
Moreno, who was not injured, didn’t file a complaint against the officer, whose discipline was negotiated through his attorney.
When his suspension ends, Ramirez will be placed on probation and undergo retraining.
Moreno is wanted on a bench warrant in connection with the pursuit.