GRAPHIC: Trooper arraigned for beating of Saginaw man caught on camera
WARNING: Details in this article may be considered graphic.
SAGINAW, Mich. (WNEM) - A Michigan state police trooper is facing criminal charges after an incident with a Saginaw man last September. The MSP released video footage of the encounter.
Trooper Paul Arrowood was arraigned in a Saginaw County Courtroom with the charges of misconduct in office, a felony, and assault and battery, a misdemeanor. Saginaw County Prosecutor John McColgan authorized the charges following an investigation conducted by MSP.
On Sept. 4, 2022, Arrowood and his partner were on patrol when they encountered a Saginaw man walking in the roadway on Webber Street near Julius Street in Saginaw.
The troopers made contact with the man and attempted to physically detain him, MSP said, adding Arrowood took the Saginaw man to the ground, striking him with a closed fist multiple times, which caused visible injuries.
“The actions of Trooper Paul Arrowood fall outside of MSP policy and procedure and they constitute an unwarranted use of force,” MSP Director Col. Joe Gasper said. “The members of the Michigan State Police are committed to treating everyone with dignity and respect, and we will tolerate no less. When we fall short of this standard, we will hold our members accountable.”
In the interest of transparency, MSP has made the investigative report and body-worn camera footage of this incident available to the public on their website. Redactions have been made to protect security of jail facilities, the integrity of the investigation, and to protect the privacy of victims and witnesses, MSP said.
Arrowood was suspended effective Sept. 30, 2022, MSP said.
Arrowood will remain on unpaid suspension pending adjudication of the criminal case and any resulting administrative investigation.
There are two other non-related use of force cases pending prosecutor review involving the MSP Third District, which could result in criminal charges against members of MSP, MSP said.
“Whether or not a criminal charge is issued, our members will be held accountable for violations of department policy,” Gasper said. “Policy violations are investigated thoroughly and acted upon in a manner consistent with labor law and collective bargaining agreements.
Gasper said the department is looking at ways to prevent similar situations in the future.
“Actions we are taking include ensuring there is accountability by supervisors, including the temporary reassignments of supervisors to ensure we have the right personnel in the right places; evaluating our use of force training, specifically training around strikes to the head and face; and building upon our de-escalation training program,” Gasper said.
As for Arrowood, he pled not guilty to the charges and he is due back in court later this month.
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