COLUMBUS, Ohio (WTVN)--Three Columbus Police Officers are facing charges in connection to their actions during protests downtown, following the death of George Floyd, in May and June of 2020.
The city brought in a special prosecutor to investigate allegations of police misconduct and excessive use of force, leading to misdemeanor charges.
Officer Traci Shaw, Officer Phillip Walls, and Sergeant Holly Kanode are now on administrative duties. The charges include dereliction of duty, assault, and violation of civil rights.
Most of the evidence used in bringing the charges involved body cam footage and bystander video of officers using pepper spray on people either walking or standing on the sidewalk.
Mayor Andrew Ginther issued a statement saying that "officers who break the law should expect to be held accountable." An attorney representing the accused officers calls the three "scapegoats" who are taking the blame for a department that "had no idea what they were doing" during the riots.
The union representing the officers says they will be part of the defense, saying they believe the officers acted accordingly, within the scope of their duties.