AUSTIN,Texas (FOX 7 Austin) - Austin Police Chief Brian Manley releases memo that the Austin Police Department has fired two officers in connection with an incident last year that led to criminal charges against them.
Officers Robert Pfaff and Donald Petraitis were indicted for several crimes including assault and tampering with a government record.
The state argued that Pfaff and Petraitis assaulted Perkins and lied about what happened in their report.
However, the defense says Perkins did not comply with commands and the officers did what they had to do to keep themselves and others at the scene safe.
A jury found the officers not guilty following a trial in December, but the officers continued to face disciplinary action by the department.
According to a disciplinary memo released Monday by Austin Police Chief Brian Manley, the memo highlights that both officers were dishonest in their responses during the R2R review.
The Department’s Disciplinary Matrix calls for an indefinite suspicion, according to the memo. The memo goes on to say:
“False statements in an officials written report, including their supplements and a probable cause affidavit, as well as false statements to Internal Affairs, whether by act or omission, is considered a False Official Statement, whose penalty under the Matrix is also an indefinite suspicion. All officers are initially apprised of this policy in the academy and are regularly reminded of APD’s stand on dishonesty. If an officer demonstrates that he cannot or will not give a truthful account of the force they used, I as Chief of police would be remiss in my duties and responsibilities if I allowed such an officer to be bestowed the power to continue to have the duties and responsibilities that are designed to protect and serve the public,” said Chief Manley.
The attorneys for the two men released a statement on Monday, saying they were disappointed in the decision.
"We were hopeful that lessons had been learned from the evidence we presented in the criminal trial, particularly the scientific evidence regarding human perception from a tenured UT psychology professor, as well as the evidence we elicited from APD's own training academy officers who instructed Officers Petraitis and Pfaff on Taser use.
The jury certainly became educated and promptly issued nine acquittals, and this following the DA's dismissal of two indictments mid-trial. Instead, it appears APD command staff is either unable or unwilling to admit the series of mistakes that were made in its investigation of these officers.
While we would have strongly preferred that APD do the right thing and reinstate these officers today, we will see to it that this occurs in the near future after presenting the same evidence to an arbitrator," said attorneys Ken Ervin and Doug O'Connell.