STOCKTON (CBS13) — Two Stockton police officers have been fired after an investigation into an arrest last December that prompted a civil rights lawsuit.
The incident happened back on Dec. 30. Stockton police said officers tried to pull over a vehicle they say was driving erratically and speeding. The driver reportedly turned off his headlights and led officers on a short chase.
Eventually, the suspect lost control during the chase. Officers then did a PIT maneuver and ended the chase. During the incident, the suspect's side-impact airbags were deployed.
Four officers "used force" during the driver's arrest, but it was unclear what kind of force the officers used.
The driver, later identified as a teenager, was booked into Juvenile Hall. However, in January, the teen's family announced an excessive force lawsuit against the police department.
Stockton Police Chief Eric Jones previously said the officers involved in the incident had been placed on administrative leave. An internal investigation was also launched.
On Tuesday, Chief Jones announced that after a review of the body camera footage, two officers involved in the incident have been fired.
"The investigation determined two of the involved officers were well outside the scope of both our policy and training. Our department has policies that state we should make attempts to avoid striking an arrestee around the head and neck area when possible," Chief Jones said in a statement.
"Given this set of circumstances, I cannot and will not condone any excessive force. Additionally, any use of profanity is considered unwarranted and not professional," Jones continued.
Chief Jones said the teenager's family was able to watch the body camera footage, but the video is not going to be released publicly.
The two officers fired have been identified by Jones as Michael Stiles who had been with Stockton police since June 2018, and Omar Villapudua, an officer hired in January 2016.
Chief Jones also noted that other officers are also receiving discipline as a result of the investigation.
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