Aurora, CO – The police chief fired Aurora Police Officer Robert Rosen on Thursday for using force on a man who was resisting arrest even though the officer was cleared by the district attorney (video below).
“Members of the Aurora Police Department have been working tirelessly to rebuild trust in our community and I want to thank those officers who do it right everyday [sic],” Aurora Police Chief Vanessa Wilson said in a statement on Feb. 11.
“The actions of Mr. Rosen were in direct contradiction of those efforts. The poor decisions he made that day do not meet the high standards that the community and I expect from my officers,” she said.
The incident occurred just after 7 a.m. on Aug. 10, 2020 at the King Soopers grocery store located in the 6000-block of South Parker Rd, the Sentinel reported.
Police responded to the store for a man who was violating a trespass order and wouldn’t leave.
Bodycam video showed the first officer to arrive on the scene had to chase the suspect through the store briefly and then took him to the ground.
The officer tried to handcuff the suspect but the man remained resisted efforts and kept his hands locked underneath him, the video showed.
Video showed that the officer waited patiently for backup to arrive, and Officer Rosen was the next officer on the scene.
“He’s holding his arms underneath him,” the first officer told Officer Rosen.
The video showed Officer Rosen tried once to pull the suspect’s arm out from under him and then punched him in the side four times to try to get him to release his arm.
“Give me your arms,” he ordered the suspect. “Give me your arms right now.”
The suspect continued to resist and Officer Rosen got up off the ground.
“You’re going to get Tased,” he warned in the video.
Seconds later, he deployed the Taser against the back of the prone man’s legs.
“Let go of your arms or you’re going to get it again,” Officer Rosen said in the video.
The video showed he deployed the Taser several more times as the suspect struggled.
The first officer finally managed to get the handcuffs on the suspect and then Officer Rosen stood up and put a new cartridge in his Taser, the video showed.
The man was walked out of the store and turned over to paramedics who took him to the hospital for evaluation and treatment, according to Aurora PD.
Aurora Police Department Spokesperson Lieutenant Chris Amsler told reporters on Feb. 11 that Officer Rosen did not follow department policy when he was assisting with the arrest, the Sentinel reported.
Chief Wilson initiated a use-of-force investigation immediately after the incident, and then that was reviewed by the Force Review Board who recommended that Internal Affairs investigate for potential department policy violations.
“When Officer Rosen arrived he briefly tried to get the man’s arm out without giving any verbal orders,” Aurora police said. “He then escalated the situation by punching the man multiple times in his ribs.”
“He deployed his Taser a total of five times, for a total of 27 seconds in a two minute period,” the press release said. “During the arrest Officer Rosen never attempted any lesser means of force nor did he make any attempts to deescalate the situation in accordance with Aurora Police training.”
Investigators also discovered that Officer Rosen had also failed to activate his bodycam during the incident and didn’t document his justifications for each use of force, the Sentinel reported.
The chief announced Officer Rosen’s termination on Feb. 11.
Now-former Officer Rosen will not be facing any criminal charges in connection with the incident, according to the Aurora PD press release.
The District Attorney’s Office for the 18th Judicial District investigated the incident and determined that the officer’s use of force against the suspect was justified.
Officer Rosen joined the Aurora Police Department in 2017 and was most recently assigned to District 3 Patrol.
Watch the incident unfold in the video below. WARNING – Graphic Content: