NewsLocal News

Actions

11 East Cleveland officers indicted; videos show them beating, kicking suspects, destroying evidence

Poster image - 2023-03-08T160727.754.jpg
Poster image - 2023-03-08T160634.180.jpg
Poster image - 2023-03-08T160611.042.jpg
Poster image - 2023-03-08T160521.993.jpg
Poster image - 2023-03-08T160805.928.jpg
Poster image - 2023-03-08T160535.288.jpg
Posted at 4:55 PM, Mar 08, 2023

EAST CLEVELAND, Ohio — Eleven more current and former East Cleveland Police officers have been indicted for committing crimes, including beating, kicking and violently assaulting members of the very community they were sworn to serve and protect.

The Cuyahoga County Prosecutor's Office and the Cleveland Division of the FBI held a news conference Wednesday afternoon to announce public corruption and civil rights violation indictments against 11 current and former East Cleveland police officers.

In attendance were Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael C. O'Malley, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Gregory Mussman and FBI Special Agent in Charge Gregory Nelson.

"The real victim here was the entire city, all the citizens of East Cleveland, who had to live in a city with fear. To do everyday chores, to get simply pulled over and the fear of what may happen when they were simply pulled over or perhaps confronted while walking the streets. And it’s hard for me to imagine what they’ve had to endure," O'Malley said.

You can watch the news conference in its entirety below:

11 East Cleveland police officers indicted on numerous charges

Body camera videos show officers alleged actions — This content below contains graphic language. Reader discretion is advised.

Authorities showed several body camera videos of the individuals who were indicted.

The first video presented showed Officer Nicholas Foti repeatedly stomping on a person who was in police custody on the ground.

The second video shows Officer Ian McInnes ordering a person to lie down on their stomach. The individual is on their knees, facing away from the officer when McInnes approaches from behind and kicks the person in the back, knocking them to the floor.

Poster image - 2023-03-08T160521.993.jpg
Images from a news conference by Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael O'Malley showing an alleged pattern of unlawful conduct at East Cleveland Police that has led to the indictment of 11 more officers.

The third video shows Officer Kyle Wood, Sgt. John Hartman and Officer Tristan Homan. The video starts with Hartman and Homan driving in a cruiser chasing someone. As they approach, one of the officers says, "Get that B****." As the vehicle comes to a stop, the officers jump out and one says, "Get his ass, get his ass, get his ass boy." By the time the officers got out of the car, the individual was already lying facedown in the street. Both officers and a third officer approach and immediately start beating the person. They are then placed in the back of a police cruiser. Homan can be heard on a body camera saying, "Nice little ass whooping." Woods responds, "Shouldn't have resisted."

Poster image - 2023-03-08T160727.754.jpg
Images from a news conference by Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael O'Malley showing an alleged pattern of unlawful conduct at East Cleveland Police that has led to the indictment of 11 more officers.

The fourth video involves McInnes and shows him exiting a police cruiser and running up to a person who is sitting on the ground against a wall with their hands up in the air. McInnes can be seen shoving the person to the ground and kicking them in the groin.

The fifth video shows an officer pointing a taser at an unarmed man lying face down on the ground. The man rolls over onto his side and the officer yells at him to turn around face down and not to move. McInnes then runs into the frame, rushes up to the man and kicks him in the ribs.

Poster image - 2023-03-08T160535.288.jpg
Images from a news conference by Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael O'Malley showing an alleged pattern of unlawful conduct at East Cleveland Police that has led to the indictment of 11 more officers.

The sixth video involves Hartman and shows him repeatedly striking someone in custody in the head.

The seventh video involved Officer Tyler Mundson, Officer Brian Stoll, and Wood following an arrest and at the East Cleveland Police Department precinct. Stoll and Mundson are searching the back of a cruiser and footage shows Stoll find someone's phone in the back seat. Stoll uses two hands and presses down on the phone to break it, and says, "Nothing." The other officer replies, "I didn't see anything either." Later, Stoll can be seen holding the phone and stating, "How does it still turn on?" Mundson responds, "That's impressive." The two officers then talk with other police personnel, joking about how easy the pursuit was. Stoll later says, "I threw the meanest f******* hook." Mundson responds, "I didn't get a single lick in."

Poster image - 2023-03-08T160634.180.jpg
Images from a news conference by Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael O'Malley showing an alleged pattern of unlawful conduct at East Cleveland Police that has led to the indictment of 11 more officers.

The eighth video, which involves McInnes, Homan and Officer Laurice Mans, shows a man colliding with the squad car McInnes was driving. McInnes calls out over the radio that the man struck his vehicle, but O’Malley said that a longer version of the video more clearly shows that McInnes appeared to strike the man instead of avoiding him.

Poster image - 2023-03-08T160611.042.jpg
Images from a news conference by Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael O'Malley showing an alleged pattern of unlawful conduct at East Cleveland Police that has led to the indictment of 11 more officers.

“Regretfully, what you didn’t see, was the car the officer taking a left turn and didn’t appear to slow down or didn’t appear to avoid the accident, as opposed to driving straight into the guy,” O’Malley said.

After the man is on the ground, there is a struggle and one officer uses a taser on him three times while the other two officers punch him. The man sustained a broken pelvis from the event.

Poster image - 2023-03-08T160805.928.jpg
Images from a news conference by Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael O'Malley showing an alleged pattern of unlawful conduct at East Cleveland Police that has led to the indictment of 11 more officers.

The ninth video shows Officer Brian Parks tasing a man multiple times. The man asks the officer, "why did you tase me?" He responds, "Why did you run?"

“I think to any casual observer, those videos are appalling and a poor reflection of policing within our community and obviously criminal conduct," O'Malley said.

The three indictments consisted of a slew of charges against the 11 officers.

I was appalled that we could be witnessing — witnessing a guy handcuffed and his head stomped, or witnessing a guy handcuffed and being tased while handcuffed repeatedly, which to me is a form of torture. And so certainly I was shaken. My next thoughts went to the victims of these incidents and how they’re doing. But what we saw, again, were people who had surrendered and were being brutalized. And it upset me. But it also lit a fire in me that these things had to be fixed. And so, fix them we will," O’Malley said.

Seven of the officers are newly indicted. Four of them had been previously indicted on other charges. As of Wednesday, there have been 16 current or former East Cleveland police officers indicted in the last six-and-a-half months.

“Make no mistake, there has been a cancer growing in the East Cleveland Police Department," O'Malley said. "We are doing our best to remove every tentacle of that cancer so that this department can rebuild and grow, to put itself in a position to hire officers who enforce the law as well as follow the law. I want to say this is a sad day for all of law enforcement.”

East Cleveland officer caught on video appearing to destroy evidence

East Cleveland Police Chief Brian Gerhard released the following statement on the indictments:

"The recent indictments of the additional four officers will not prevent my agency from functioning or adequately protecting the citizens, the indictments were expected as this has been an on-going investigation.I have cooperated fully with the county prosecutor's office and will continue to do so, the county investigator and his colleague from the FBI have the ability to logon the agency bodycam system and have been provided all records they have requested from me to assist in their investigation into corrupt activity within the department.As I stated when appointed chief last October, I will move the department in a positive direction, I have very good personnel on my staff that will assist me rebuilding the agency."

Below are the individual officers and their specific charges:

Brian Thomas Parks - current officer
Parks is charged with two counts of felonious assault, both second-degree felonies; attempted felonious assault, a third-degree felony, assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; tampering with records, a third-degree felony; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

All of the charges stem from an incident on Oct. 1, 2021.

Nicholas Foti - previously resigned
Foti is charged with felonious assault, a second-degree felony; attempted felonious assault, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

All of the charges stem from an incident on April 1, 2020.

Kyle Wood - East Cleveland investigator - previously indicted
For an incident that allegedly occurred on March 31, 2022, Wood has been charged with theft in office, a fifth-degree felony; tamping with evidence, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor; dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor and telecommunications fraud, a fifth-degree felony.

For an incident that allegedly occurred on April 10, 2022, Wood has been charged with assault, a second-degree felony; attempted felonious assault, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; obstructing justice, a third-degree felony; telecommunications fraud, a fifth-degree felony; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

For an incident that allegedly occurred on Nov. 26, 2021, Wood has been charged with felonious assault, a second-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor; tampering with records, a third-degree felony and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

For an incident that allegedly occurred on July 16, 2022, Wood has been charged with telecommunications fraud, a fifth-degree felony; tampering with records, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor

Tyler Mundson - current police officer - previously indicted
For an incident that allegedly occurred on March 31, 2022, Mudson has been charged with theft in office, a fifth-degree felony; tampering with evidence, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

For an incident that allegedly occurred on April 10, 2022, Mudson has been charged with obstructing justice, a third-degree felony; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

For an incident that allegedly occurred on July 16, 2022, Mundson has been charged with tampering with records, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

Brian Stoll - currently on leave for previous indictments
For an incident that allegedly occurred on March 31, 2022, Stoll is charged with theft in office, a fifth-degree misdemeanor; tampering with evidence, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

For an incident that allegedly occurred on April 10, 2022, Stoll has been charged with assault, a second-degree felony; attempted felonious assault, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; obstructing justice, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

Daniel Toomer - currently on leave for previous indictments
For an incident that allegedly occurred on April 10, 2022, Toomer has been charged with obstructing justice, a third-degree felony; tampering with evidence, a third-degree felony; tampering with records, a third-degree felony; theft in office, a fifth-degree felony; disrupting public services, a fourth-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

Tristan Homan - currently an Elyria police officer after resigning at East Cleveland
For an incident that allegedly occurred on Nov. 26, 2021, Homan has been charged with felonious assault, a second-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

For an incident that allegedly occurred on April 12, 2022, Homan is charged with assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

John E. Hartman - current police sergeant
For an incident that allegedly occurred on Nov. 26, 2021, Hartman has been charged with felonious assault, a second-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor; tampering with records, a third-degree felony and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

For an incident that allegedly occurred on July 10, 2022, Hartman has been charged with felonious assault, a second-degree felony; attempted felonious assault, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

For an incident that allegedly occurred on July 14, 2022, Hartman has been charged with tampering with records, a third-degree felony.

Tre DeHart-Robinson - current police officer
For an incident that allegedly occurred on July 16, 2022, DeHart-Robinson has been charged with telecommunications fraud, a fifth-degree felony; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor

Ian W. McInnes - current police detective
For an incident that allegedly occurred on Feb. 25, 2020, McInnes is charged with attempted felonious assault, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

For an incident that allegedly occurred on Feb. 14, 2022, McInnes is charged with attempted felonious assault, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

For an incident that allegedly occurred on Oct. 3, 2021, McInnes is charged with attempted felonious assault, a third-degree felony; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

For an incident that allegedly occurred on April 12, 2022, McInnes is charged with two counts of felonious assault, both second-degree felonies; assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

Laurice Mans - former officer who was terminated
For an incident that allegedly occurred on April 12, 2022, Mans is charged with assault, a first-degree misdemeanor; interfering with civil rights, a first-degree misdemeanor and dereliction of duty, a second-degree misdemeanor.

Prior indictments
Last year, nine East Cleveland police officers— including Police Chief Scott Gardner— were indicted on various charges. Their cases are all still pending in court.

Gardner was suspended and placed on administrative leave after he was charged with multiple felonies that included telecommunications fraud, tampering with records, passing bad checks, failing to remit, theft, grand theft and theft in office.

That indictment alleged Gardner failed to file returns and pay taxes from 2014 to 2019, and purposely falsified, destroyed, removed, concealed, altered, defaced or mutilated digital sales tax return records with the purpose of defrauding the Ohio Department of Taxation.

Gardner has since been terminated from East Cleveland Police.

RELATED:

Download the News 5 Cleveland app now for more stories from us, plus alerts on major news, the latest weather forecast, traffic information and much more. Download now on your Apple device here, and your Android device here.

You can also catch News 5 Cleveland on Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, YouTube TV, DIRECTV NOW, Hulu Live and more. We're also on Amazon Alexa devices. Learn more about our streaming options here.