BRENTWOOD, Md. (CBSDC/AP) — Prince George’s County police say two officers have been suspended while officials investigate an incident in which an officer discharged his gun.
In a press conference Tuesday, police said that videotape evidence does not support the initial account of the incident that occurred Friday in Brentwood.
Authorities said earlier that the officer fired his weapon during a confrontation with a man who started to reach for the officer’s gun. No one was injured.
Corporal Donald Taylor, the police officer who discharged his firearm, and a witnessing police officer have been suspended as the Special Investigation Response Team continues to investigate the incident.
Police say have already asked authorities to amend the criminal charges against the suspect, 19-year-old Ryan Keith Dorm of Cottage City. However, authorities also believe some sort of crime was being committed by the suspect. As such, not all of the charges against him are expected to be dropped.
Authorities initially said detectives were working an assignment near Rhode Island Ave. and 38th St. around 9:40 p.m. on Feb. 3 when they observed two individuals, one wearing a mask, enter the Lowest Price Gas convenience store.
Believing that the two suspects were about to commit a robbery, the detectives confronted the suspects. One suspect swung at the involved officer and began to flee. The officer caught up to the suspect after a brief foot pursuit, during which time the suspect allegedly reached for the officer’s firearm. Fearing that the suspect was attempting to take control of his firearm, the officer discharged his weapon at the suspect and made the apprehension.
The video which surfaced this week contradicts that sequence of events.
“We had questions about that and that was what caused us to pause. We presented [the video] to the State’s Attorney’s office and they’re reviewing it,” said Carlos Acosta, Prince George’s County Police Inspector General.
He would not comment on further specifics on the tape because of the ongoing criminal investigation.
Acosta stated investigations such as these need to be transparent.
Overall, the newly appointed police official believes the department does a good job.
“I think 99 percent of the police officers are good police officers,” said Acosta. “I think they do a very good job and they have a tough job.”
He then made it clear those officers who do not follow proper procedure will not be tolerated.
“The people who don’t want to follow the rules, they know who they are,” Acosta cautioned. “And they absolutely understand–this has always been the case–that they are going to be held accountable.”
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