Two US officers charged after elderly dementia sufferer pushed to ground during arrest

A US police officer who pushed an elderly dementia sufferer to the ground and pinned her to the hood of his car is facing criminal charges.

Karen Garner, 73, was being arrested for walking out of a Walmart in Colorado without paying for $14 (£10) worth of items when the incident happened in June last year.

Body camera footage released by her lawyer showed her being held against the bonnet of a patrol car in Loveland with her handcuffed left arm bent up behind her head.

Ms Garner suffers from dementia and sensory aphasia, which impacts her ability to verbally communicate and understand.

Officer Austin Hopp is facing charges of second-degree assault, attempting to influence a public servant, and official misconduct.

A second officer, Daria Jalali, who arrived after Ms Garner was handcuffed, is facing charges of failing to report use of force, failing to intervene and official misconduct.

They were among three officers who resigned last month following a federal lawsuit filed by Ms Garner’s family.

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The release of the footage also triggered a backlash in the community and two independent investigations.

Ms Garner’s lawyer has alleged her elbow was fractured and her shoulder dislocated during the arrest.

Video also showed the elderly woman slumped over and handcuffed to a bench in her holding cell later on.

She appeared frail and confused, repeatedly saying “I want to go home”.

Mark Gibson

Graduates in Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois 1990. Move to Los Angeles California in 2004. Specialized in Internet journalism.

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