A Houston police officer has been indicted by a Harris County grand jury for kicking a suspected burglar who had already been shot and for tampering with evidence in the case. The incident took place in February, but the indictment by the grand jury was just handed down last week.
The officer had hurried to his own home upon learning that a burglary was reportedly in progress. The officer confronted the suspected burglar who was allegedly carrying some of the officers person property from the home. A struggle ensued and the officer shot the suspected burglar.
According to the Dallas Morning News:
“[v]ideo taken by witnesses of the incident indicated that Johnson then kicked Carr while he was down. ‛Officer Johnson delivered a number of blows with his foot by kicking Carr while he was on the ground incapacitated after he’d been shot,’ Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg said at a news conference.”
Prosecutors also allege that the officer moved the suspected burglar’s tool, a pickle fork, to support the officer’s claim that the burglar had used it to threaten him.
This is the second case in the past two weeks of a Harris county law enforcement officer being indicted by a grand jury. A Harris County deputy and her husband were recently indicted on charged related to the death of a man allegedly placed in a chokehold by the deputy’s husband.
While indictments make headlines, it is important to remember that the grand jury’s only function is to determine whether probably cause exists to believe an offense has been committed. A grand jury’s indictment is far from a finding of guilt beyond-a-reasonable-doubt. If you are accused of a felony in Fort Worth, or anywhere in Tarrant County, you should consult with an attorney as soon as possible. A Fort Worth Grand Jury Attorney can help you understand the charges you are facing and help you defend yourself. If you have not yet been indicted, your attorney may be able to present evidence for consideration by the grand jury that can result in a “no bill.” If you need help with a grand jury or any criminal law matter in Tarrant, Dallas, Hood, Parker, Johnson, or any other Texas counties, Blake & Blake LLP can help. Our attorneys are experienced in defending criminal cases and have successfully represented clients accused of felonies. We have a track record of obtaining no bills from grand jury proceedings.