From [HERE] After conducting a review of the June 28 incident in which a Lancaster City Police Officer deployed a Taser on a man on South Prince Street, the Lancaster County District Attorney's Office announced Wednesday that it has determined that no criminal charges are warranted against the officer.
Officer Philip Bernot was acting within the scope of Lancaster Bureau of Police Department policy regarding use of force when he used his Taser device to subdue Sean Williams in the incident, District Attorney Craig Stedman concluded. Thus, Stedman said in the announcement, there is not sustainable evidence to establish (Bernot) intended to commit a crime. [did he tase him by mistake or in self defense in a sequel video??]
The footage showed the officer repeatedly asking Williams to straighten his legs as Mr. Williams was sitting on a curb.
“Legs straight out or you’re getting Tased,” Officer Bernot said.
Mr. Williams started to straighten his legs. Another person can be heard yelling, “Put your legs straight out and cross them now.”
Mr. Williams started to bend his knees, bringing the soles of his feet together, and Officer Bernot, who was standing behind Mr. Williams, used the stun gun on him.
"Lancaster city officials have previously stated his actions followed policy," Stedman wrote in the announcement. "And we concur."
Stedman noted that to support a criminal charge, there must actually be criminal evidence, "rather than mere speculation," establishing that Bernot had a criminal intent when he used his Taser on Williams. Criminal intent on the part of Bernot was not evident in the incident, Stedman concluded.
However, Stedman said, during his office's review for criminal conduct, it discovered what his office calls "critical shortcomings" in Lancaster Police Department policy as it existed at the time of the Taser incident.
Stedman said he articulated those concerns in a detailed memorandum that was sent to Lancaster city officials and the police department this week.
Williams, who filed a federal lawsuit against Bernot and the Lancaster Bureau of Police over the incident in July, was also given a copy of the assessment, Stedman said.
Brian R Mildenberg, the lawyer for Williams, issued this statement:
"The District Attorney's press release of today confirms that the City of Lancaster's use of force policies were deficient and inappropriate, and must be remedied. This supports Sean Williams' pending civil rights case against the City and the police officer. We look forward to Sean's day in federal court. We hope this case brings reform and halts the use of excessive force in Lancaster, and that a terrible incident of this nature never happens again."
In July the Lancaster, Pa mayor and police announced that the cop won’t be suspended either. Danene Sorace, the racist suspect mayor, acknowledged at a news conference last month that some members of the community would find the decision “extremely upsetting.”
“So who is accountable?” she asked. “I am. I am accountable, as mayor, for existing policies, procedures, training, hiring practices and more. It’s on me.” [MORE]