Northwoods officer pleads not responsible to civil rights indictment

ST. LOUIS, Missouri – A grand jury has indicted Northwoods officer Michael Benett of improper force and violated a woman’s civil rights. The officer pleaded not guilty to the federal prosecution on Thursday.

The incident occurred on April 15 in the Florissant Department of Motor Vehicles. Office staff tried to get the woman to leave. She hits a man and then Bennett intervenes. A YouTube video of the confrontation shows Bennett repeatedly beating the woman. Eventually, other officers arrived and arrested her.

The indictment states: “Bennett deprived ST of the right to be free from improper seizure, a right enshrined and protected by the constitution and laws of the United States that includes the right to be free from the use of improper force. The defendant repeatedly hit ST with his fists, while the victim did not threaten anyone. This offense resulted in bodily harm to ST. “

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