A Houston transit cop who was caught on surveillance video unmercifully beating a homeless man with his baton over a dozen times wasn’t fired, even after an investigation determined he used excessive force.
Instead, Jarius Warren submitted his resignation letter as if leaving on the best of terms after he was told an internal review board was moving to fire him.
“The board recommended termination of the officer,” Metro Police Chief Vera Bumpers stated.
“Officer Warren, however, presented his resignation before that action could be taken.”
Warren submitted his resignation letter on Monday, which was obtained by ABC13.
“I am writing this letter to serve as formal notice that effective immediately, I am resigning from my position as a licensed enforcement officer with the METRO police department. It has been a great pleasure and honor to serve with the METRO police department. The department provides a great service to the people of Houston, and I hope you all have continued success,” he wrote.
In the September 14 video, Jarius Warren and Daniel Reynoso can be seen creeping up on Darrell Giles, a 31-year old homeless man who was sleeping on a bench.
Warren begins poking his sternum with his baton, attempting to wake him up.
Giles suddenly awakes and stands up.
A beatdown ensues.
Warren can be seen beating Giles about a dozen times before he finally falls on the train station platform, where he is beaten several more times.
Officer Reynoso appears to signal for Warren to stop beating Giles, but never appears to physically stop him.
Giles was arrested and charged with resisting arrest and trespassing, according to CW39.
At a September 16 press conference, Chief Bumpers apologized to Giles and stated the charges against him would be dropped.
“We are not going to tolerate excessive force by our officers,” Bumpers assured.
“Let me just say that I did count the number of times Mr Giles was struck, but one is too many in my opinion if it’s not justified.”
Houston Transit Police initially said they wouldn’t release video of the beat down.
But soon after Bumpers’ press conference, Black Lives Matter activists were outside calling for the video to be released, and gave an ultimatum for it to be released by Monday before 2 p.m.
“The citizens of Houston need to see what’s going on,” activist Ashton Woods insisted. “This incident is actually indicative of how the city and the law enforcement agencies treat the homeless population of Houston.
“Regardless of who’s in the uniform, it’s the person wearing the uniform who’s committing the abuse,” added Woods.
The video was released Monday.
Giles recalled the beating in an interview on Monday, saying he was still sore and recovering.
“I thought he pulled a gun out,” Giles told ABC13.
“He hit me so hard, he knocked me to the ground, so the first couple licks, he’s just standing over me going boom, boom, boom making some noise.”
“I don’t remember too much. All I remember is bracing myself and just taking the licks and I was holding my arm up,” he said.
Warren and Reynoso were suspended without pay the next day, although Reynoso was recently reinstated after he was cleared of excessive force charges.
Giles was apparently asked to leave the station platform, but later returned to retrieve his cell phone he left behind when he decided to rest his injured foot.
Chief Bumpers stated he was being uncooperative, but stated that didn’t excuse Warren’s use of excessive force
“I want to reiterate as I did last week, that this incident is not a reflection of the men and women who work at Metro Police,” the chief said.
The people of Houston hope it isn’t.