No News is Bad News. Join the SA Current Press Club.

Thursday, August 13, 2020

2 San Antonio Officers Fired for Excessive Force, Including Kneeling on Suspect's Neck

Posted By on Thu, Aug 13, 2020 at 11:46 AM

click to enlarge SHUTTERSTOCK
  • Shutterstock
The San Antonio Police Department has terminated two officers for using excessive force on a handcuffed suspect who wasn't resisting arrest, KSAT reports, citing disciplinary records.

Officers Michael Brewer and Andre Vargas were both given indefinite suspensions over an arrest that occurred on Nov. 26 of last year, according to the documents obtained by the TV station. Brewer is accused of kneeling on the suspect's neck.

News of the firings comes as SAPD faces increased public scrutiny over officer conduct after nationwide protests over the death of George Floyd. Floyd died after a Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes as he cried out that he couldn't breathe.

The two SAPD officers arrested a man on the South Side after a disturbance call. Even though the subject didn't appear to resist, Brewer inflicted "unnecessary physical violence” when he put his left knee on the man’s neck, according to the documents cited by KSAT.

In addition, Vargas used unnecessary force when he lifted the man by his handcuffed arms, according to the report. Further, Vargas' use of a Taser on the suspect "far exceeded the reasonable force necessary to accomplish the arrest,” according to the cited police records.

The arrested man filed a complaint about the officers in January, KSAT reports.

At press time, it's unclear whether either officer is appealing the firing through an arbitration process guaranteed under San Antonio's police union contract. That process has also come under increased scrutiny since it's allowed roughly two-thirds of officers fired over the past decade to win back their jobs. 

Stay on top of San Antonio news and views. Sign up for our Weekly Headlines Newsletter.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

San Antonio Current works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of San Antonio and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep San Antonio's true free press free.

Read the Digital Print Issue

October 7, 2020

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.


© 2020 San Antonio Current

Website powered by Foundation