Friday, November 11, 2011 , Updated 10:38 a.m., December 16, 2011
UPDATED: YouTube shows Dallas police shove Occupy Dallas protester off planter
Officer Jimmy Hollis is now on restricted duty, and the DPD will open an investigation.
DALLAS A YouTube has surfaced that shows a Dallas police officer shove Occupy Dallas protester Stephen Benavides off a Bank of America planter during an event last weekend -- one that resulted in eight people getting arrested.
Benavides said all along that he'd been pushed, which the police department denied. The encounter turned into a mini-riot, and Benavides was charged with assaulting a public servant and resisting arrest. He was held in Dallas County Jail until Wednesday night, when he posted a bond of more than $50,000.
Benavides told the DMN that Officer Jimmy Hollis told him to get off the planter but gave him no time to comply before giving him a shove.
Last night, the Dallas Police Department discovered a new video of the Occupy Dallas demonstration that occurred on November 5, 2011. The video shows a Dallas Police Officer, who was working off-duty for Bank of America, push a demonstrator off a planter in front of the building. Chief David Brown has ordered the officer placed on restricted duty and initiated a formal investigation into the officer's actions. The restricted duty assignment will also prohibit the officer from working off-duty employment until the departmental investigation is complete.
In light of this development, the Police Department has requested that the Dallas County District Attorney and the Dallas City Attorney proceed no further with the criminal cases alleged to have occurred until further consultation takes place. These meetings are anticipated to occur next week.
The Dallas Police Department is dedicated to the protection of all members of the public. Any allegation of police misconduct is taken seriously and will be vigorously investigated. The Police Department encourages any witnesses who would like to make a statement or who have additional video to contact the Internal Affairs Division at (214) 671-3986.
UPDATE: Officer Jimmy Hollis was given a one-day suspension by Chief David Brown on Thursday. The internal investigation found that he used unnecessary force when he pushed Occupy Dallas protester Stephen Benavides off a planter last month. Hollis has also been restricted from working off-duty jobs for 60 days. The police department will no longer seek an indictment against Benavides, and has also asked the city attorney’s office to dismiss all "use of sidewalk" citations issued at the protest that day.
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