Erie officer suspended for kicking protester

Pennsylvania
Police lights on during an emergency.

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ERIE, Pa. (AP and WJET) – Officials say an Erie police officer seen kicking a seated protester during civil unrest in Erie last month will be suspended without pay for three days and will be on desk duty after that until he completes sensitivity training.

WJET reports that Mayor Joe Schember announced the suspension at a news conference Monday.

During the news conference, Schember said he wouldn’t be surprised if the Fraternal Order of Police decided to file a grievance in response to the suspension.

F.O.P. Lodge No.7 President Sgt. Ken Kensill said the union will be reviewing the mayor’s decision.

“It is within police policy in what he did and not only was he doing that to protect his fellow officers but also to protect the protester from getting injured by rioters throwing bricks and firing mortars at police officers and that person had to be removed in a timely fashion,” Kensill said.

Schember said similar sensitivity training imposed on the suspended officer will be required for the entire police department.

Attorney Timothy McNair, who represents the protester, said his client was glad that some action was taken against the officer but believed the suspension should have been longer.

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