(The AEGIS Alliance) – A former police officer for St. Paul, Minnesota was handed down a six-year prison sentence for the use of excessive force against an unarmed Black man in the course of an incident that happened in 2016.
District Judge Wilhelmina Wright said to Brett Palkowitsch, age 33, that he’d “flagrantly abused” the trust given to him as a law enforcement officer while during Friday’s sentencing. Palkowitsch was pronounced guilty on excessive force charges in 2019 by a federal jury. At the trial, Palkowitsch’s former law enforcement coworkers indicated he’d boasted about kicking as well as very seriously wounding Frank Baker that was misidentified as a suspect associated with a street fight.
52-year-old Baker had been commanded to step out of his vehicle prior to being aggressively assaulted and beaten in the leg by a police canine during the course of the occurrence. While on the ground and shrieking in pain from the canines’ assault, Palkowitsch proceeded to kick Baker in his upper body several times. This caused Baker to be in critical condition after enduring collapsed lungs and also 7 of his ribs were broken.
Officers had responded to a phone call involving a Black male who was armed and got into a street fight. There was no evidence that Baker was actually associated with the alleged fight or even anything else unlawful.
“Instead of lawfully carrying out his critical public safety responsibilities, Palkowitsch abused his authority by using excessive force,” Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Pamela S. Karlan with DOJ’s Civil Rights Division stated. “The Justice Department will continue to vigorously prosecute officers who engage in criminal misconduct.”
Palkowitsch had waivered his appeal rights during the verdict in the course of his trial, he is probably going to file an appeal for the six-year prison sentence considering that Wright declined an agreement between district attorneys as well as Palkowitsch’s defense for a sentence of in between 4 and 5 years, Minnesota Public Radio reported. The charge held a maximum prison sentence of around one decade.
Palkowitsch asked for forgiveness in court to Baker and the St. Paul Police Department prior to him being sentenced to prison.
“I hope that today gives you a little bit of closure, but I know for the rest of your life it’s something you’re going to have to deal with,” Palkowitsch stated to Baker. “For the rest of my life, it’s something that I’m going to have to live with as well. But from the bottom of my heart, I’m sorry.”
Baker continues to struggle with long-lasting health issues because of the assault, apparently requiring to take 18 pills every day. He informed MPR he didn’t think that Palkowitsch’s apology was actually genuine however asserted that he’d already forgiven the former cop that had created a “living hell” for his way of life.
“They call me the Black superman,” Baker informed MPR. “Because anybody who took a beating like that and still live. And I say no, no, no. It was God. He gave me a second chance. Because a lot of people, what law enforcement did to them, killed them. They can’t come back and tell their story.”
“One thing I want people to know is that I love the law,” Baker mentioned. “I really do. You get more good policemen than bad policemen.”
Kyle James Lee – The AEGIS Alliance – This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.