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Anthony DeHerrera, a longtime sheriff’s deputy in Pueblo, never thought he’d be seeking justice against other men in uniform. But in April 2009, his son and his son’s friend were beaten by Denver police officers in an incident captured on videotape. DeHerrera says the footage clearly shows brutality and a cover-up that began when officers realized their actions were being listened to over his son’s cell phone, writes The Denver Post.
“If they were Joe Q citizens, they would be in jail,” deputy DeHerrera says.
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But Denver’s new manager of safety, Ron Perea, believes “nothing” in the video, which was part of a settlement with DeHerrera’s son and friend, shows that excessive force was used. But the FBI isn’t so sure. By the request of Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper, the bureau has agreed to conduct a review of the events to see if there is a basis for a federal civil rights investigation (via CNN).
Meanwhile, Denver police are getting skewered by the press, including Post columnist Vincent Carroll, who in the past has been extremely reluctant to criticize police in brutality cases.
“A decade ago, a bum such as Officer Joseph Bini could lie on an affidavit that sent a no-knock raid to the wrong address, resulting in the death of Ismael Mena, and find himself under a paltry three-month suspension,” Carroll writes. “Those days are gone, of course. Or are they?”