Texas Father Pepper Sprayed for Filming Officers While Son Was Being Arrested
The Keller Police Chief spoke out for the first time about the incident from August of last year.
Last month, body cam footage came out from the Keller Police Department involving the arrest of Dillon Puente. Dillon was pulling into the road for his home and was pulled over for a traffic violation. The officer said Dillon made a wide right turn. The officer asked Dillon if he could search the vehicle and Dillon refused.
Dillon was placed in the back of the cop car after his refusal and was going to be taken to jail for the traffic violation. Once Dillon was in custody, Sergeant Blake Shimanek then had the legal right to search his car. Body cam footage showed that Dillon had nothing illegal in his car. At some point, Dillon's father, Marco Puente came outside to make sure his son was OK and began filming the officers from across the street.
One of the officers attempted to take Marco's phone. He was taken to the ground and pepper sprayed. Keller Police Chief Brad Fortune apologized to the Puente family and the public in a special presentation last night during a city council meeting. "As your chief of police, I repeat that I'm sorry this incident occurred on my watch," Fortune said. "It should have never happened."
Fortune said Tuesday night that the incident was reviewed and that charges against the Puentes were dropped. Fortune also said that he personally apologized to Marco Puente and made sure that any money connected to their bail was refunded. Following an internal affairs investigation, Shimanek was demoted by two ranks and has since been taken off patrol for an unknown period of time due to safety concerns, Fortune said Tuesday night.
The other officer, Ankit Tomer, was not disciplined because the facts didn't warrant any discipline, Fortune added in his presentation. During the meeting, many asked that the two officers be fired for their actions. Marco Puente is now suing both officers in federal court.