Eddie Becerra and Nicholas Beck, two Phoenix police officers filmed severely beating a seemingly cooperative suspect, will not be charged with a crime.
The officers claim Harry Denman, 39, fired a gun at their vehicle, damaging it. Footage shows them stamp Denman's face into the tiled floor, strike his head with their guns, then repeatedly kick him in the ribs. The beating continues after Denman is handcuffed.
When the story broke, the officers were placed on leave and criticized by their own police chief, Michael Sullivan. Though Maricopa County Attorney's Office's determined that "the actions taken by Officer Eddie Becerra warranted a criminal charge", it steered a grand jury not to indict him, and did not trouble the panel with the other officer to begin with.
Denman was charged with aggravated assault, with discharging a firearm, and, of course, with resisting arrest.
The man cries, "Oh God, please," as blood splatter is visible on the floor near his head, according to the video.
Seconds later, the man is heard on the video saying he is sorry and "please don't kill me" before he is lifted up by the two officers. The man pleads for his glasses, which are left behind as the three walk out of view and filming appears to end.
"What is depicted in the video is not how we train and is not aligned with the core values of the Phoenix Police Department," Phoenix police Chief Michael Sullivan said in a statement. Sullivan was sworn in as the department's new chief on Friday.
Having given them the benefit of every possible doubt, the assumption that all the screaming, abuse and brutality was the reasonable implementation of tactical necessity rather than angry retribution…. what remains is police beating a handcuffed and obviously neutralized suspect for information. That prosecutors wouldn't follow through on this is worse than usual, because it goes beyond mere police brutality. Their (entirely intentional) failure presents torture as a sham justification for rage.
Here's the video. You've been warned.