A Denver police officer who shot and killed a developmentally disabled teenager last summer has been suspended for 10 months without pay and will not return to the street when he comes back, sys the Denver Post. Denver Manager of Safety Al LaCabe issued the decision yesterday. Officer James Turney’s suspension begins today; when he returns he will be assigned to an “administrative post.” Turney will appeal.
LaCabe, who choked up when discussing the decision, concluded that Turney, who is white, violated “efficiency and safety” rules when the officer shot and killed black teenager Paul Childs on July 5. “I can’t change what happened,” LaCabe said. “I can’t make up for the loss and the pain and everything that has happened. But what we want to do is move on from this incident.”
The Post says the decision represented the biggest political challenge yet for Mayor John Hickenlooper, who took office soon after the shooting. The punishment was much more severe than the 20-day suspension Police Chief Jerry Whitman proposed. It is among the strictest penalties against a Denver police officer in years.