UPPER MARLBORO, Md. — A former Maryland officer convicted in a shooting that paralyzed a handcuffed man tried to attack prosecutors at his sentencing, delaying the proceeding until October, officials said.
Sheriff’s deputies in the Circuit Court for Prince George’s County had to subdue former District Heights police Sgt. Johnnie Riley, 44, at the Tuesday hearing before clearing the courtroom, according to Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s office.
Allen Wolfe, Riley’s Baltimore attorney, declined to characterize his client’s actions but said they came after a prosecutor said Riley should be held to a higher standard because of his service for the military in Iraq and his position as an officer.
“He’s seen — over the last two years — his life unravel in what is undisputedly an action he took on a fleeing felon who had already been arrested and was escaping,” Wolfe said Wednesday. “It became too much after two years.”
Riley’s sentencing was rescheduled for Oct. 15. A jury convicted him in June of assault, using a handgun during a violent crime and misconduct in office.
Wolfe said Riley faces a minimum of five years in prison but that his most serious conviction, first-degree assault, carries a maximum of 25 years.
In September 2012, prosecutors say Riley shot a handcuffed man, identified as Kalvin Kyle, in the back after Kyle got out of a police cruiser and began to run away; Kyle was left paralyzed. Riley had earlier pulled Kyle on suspicion of driving a stolen motorcycle.