June 24, 2024

Ohio officer fired after body cam video shows him release K-9 onto Black man with his hands up

An Ohio officer who earlier this month was captured on body camera footage releasing a K-9 police dog onto a suspect who had his hands up has been fired, officials said Wednesday. 

Ryan Speakman, an officer for the Circleville Police Department, has been terminated, effective immediately, the department said in a statement. 

“Speakman’s actions during the review of his canine apprehension of suspect Jadarrius Rose on July 4 show that Officer Speakman did not meet the standards and expectations we hold for our police officers,” the department said. 

Circleville is located about 30 miles south of Columbus. 

Recently released body camera footage showed Speakman releasing the K-9 onto the 23-year-old Rose despite commands from at least one Ohio State Highway Patrol trooper to stop the dog. The dog was released as Rose, who is Black, appeared to be surrendering after a chase.

Speakman had been placed on paid administrative leave as the department’s Use of Force Review Board investigated the incident. The review board determined that the department’s policy for the use of canines was followed in the apprehension and arrest, police said. 

In addition, Shallow Creek Kennels Inc., the Pennsylvania-based police service dog training facility that trained the dog involved in the incident, affirmed that its training protocols were followed, according to police. 

State troopers said they were attempting to inspect a semi-truck on U.S. Route 23 in Ohio when they noticed a missing rear mud flap. Rose, the truck’s driver, didn’t pull over, leading to a pursuit. 

Eventually, Rose did stop, but when officers exited their vehicles with guns drawn, he pulled away, tearing his left tire by speeding through a spike strip, effectively ending the chase. 

Body cam footage showed Rose then exiting the vehicle and seemingly complying with officers’ instructions, with his hands up. A state trooper can be heard telling the local Circleville police not to release their K-9 onto Rose, saying, “Do not release the dog with his hands up! Do not release the dog with his hands up!”

Despite at least one warning, an officer, later identified as Speakman, released the dog and it bit Rose, holding its grip for over 30 seconds while Rose screamed for officers to intervene. 

Rose was later jailed for three days before being released.   

On Tuesday, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine called the incident “a lesson, a wake-up call to everyone that police training in the state of Ohio is not equal.”

“Our big police departments, our big cities, certainly Ohio State Highway Patrol, they’re excellently trained,” DeWine told reporters. “When you get to smaller departments, they may not have the resources to have that training that’s needed.”

Circleville police addressed the governor’s comments Wednesday, saying that “while we certainly respect Gov. DeWine’s views and are always ready to discuss how to improve police training, Circleville’s canine teams of dogs and officers are trained and certified to meet current Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission-recognized standards.” 

Errol Barnett and Analisa Novak contributed to this report. 

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