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Felony Charges for Detroit Officer Accused of Shooting 3 Journalists With Rubber Pellets

2020-07-21 04:16:54
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A Detroit police corporal is facing felony assault charges amid accusations that he shot rubber pellets at three photojournalists who covered a protest in May against police brutality in the city.

Cpl. Daniel Debono, 32, was charged on Monday with three counts of felonious assault, which carries a maximum penalty of four years, in the “unprovoked” shooting, the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office said.

“The evidence shows that these three journalists were leaving the protest area and that there was almost no one else on the street where they were,” Kym Worthy, the county prosecutor, said in a statement.

“They were a threat to no one,” she said. “There are simply no explicable reasons why the alleged actions of this officer were taken.”

The Detroit Police Department said that it had begun an investigation as soon as it learned about the encounter, and that Police Chief James E. Craig had suspended Corporal Debono.

Once the investigation was complete, it was turned over to the prosecutor’s office “for review and charging recommendations,” Sgt. Nicole Kirkwood, a spokeswoman for the department, said in an email on Monday.

She said that it was important to note that Corporal Debono’s actions did not reflect “the vast majority of the men and women who have been working the protest for the last eight weeks and doing what is right.”

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