Investigator: Cleveland officers charged in alleged beating

7:02 PM, Mar 18, 2011   |    comments
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CLEVELAND -- Four Cleveland police officers have been charged with assault and suspended without pay in the alleged beating of a Cleveland Heights man.

Edward Henderson, 40, spoke exclusively with the Investigator Tom Meyer in January. He told Meyer that several officers beat him so severely that he suffered a shattered eye socket and detached retina and a broken nose.

The officers who face criminal charges were ordered to report to police internal affairs today (Friday) where they will turn in their badges pending the outcome of their court case.

The officers are: Christopher Randolph, Paul Crawford, Martin Lentz, and Kevin Smith. Police officials say all the officers have less than five years on the force.

Channel 3 News has learned that 41 officers in 28 police cars and the police helicopter were involved in a high-speed chase on New Year's Day.

Henderson told Meyer the pursuit began when an officer knocked on Henderson's car window when he was stopped at a traffic light late at night.

Henderson said he had no idea it was a police officer. He says he panicked and took off. Once he knew police were giving chase, he says he finally pulled over and got down on the ground.

He says even though he was handcuffed, officers beat him. He spent three days in the hospital recovering from his injuries.

The city has refused to turn over the video from the police helicopter that Henderson says will show he was beaten by police.

Judge Nancy Fuerst ruled recently that the video could be turned over only to Henderson's lawyers and not to anyone else, including members of the news media.

One of Henderson's lawyers, Daniel Caplin saw the video and called it shocking and disgusting.


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