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Loveland officer fired after allegedly striking woman during hospital evaluation

Loveland Police Department
Posted at 8:37 PM, May 24, 2023

LOVELAND, Colo. — An officer in his first year of service with the Loveland Police Department has been terminated after allegedly hitting a woman in the face at a local hospital.

The Loveland Police Department said on Saturday around 8:30 p.m., officers responded to the area of N. Garfield Avenue and E. 29th Street after receiving a report that a woman was wandering around traffic and speaking incoherently.

Officers were able to locate the woman and put her in protective custody after she could not tell them where she lived or how they could help her, the department said. They then brought her to the Medical Center of the Rockies.

According to the department, the woman, who was handcuffed, became verbally uncooperative with the healthcare workers and spat at both a nurse and an officer.

"The officer responded with an inappropriate use of force by striking the female in the face, causing minor injuries to her face," the police department said.

That officer's partner intervened and removed him from the room before radioing a supervisor to come to the scene. That other officer also ensured the woman was evaluated by hospital staff, the department said.

That evening, the officer was placed on administrative leave. The same evening, the woman was medically cleared and brought to the Larimer County Jail on a charge of second-degree assault on a peace officer.

The following day, Loveland Police Chief Timothy Doran, who became chief in January, contacted the Larimer County District Attorney’s Office and requested a criminal investigation into the incident.

The Larimer County Sheriff's Office is leading this investigation.

On Tuesday at 10 a.m., the officer was terminated from the police department.

In a video statement posted online, Chief Doran said he had promised transparency and accountability when he stepped into the role, and needed to share with the community what had happened with this officer.

He said the officer was still in the one-year probationary period each Loveland officer must complete before becoming a full-fledged officer, Doran said.

"Being a police officer in 2023 requires extraordinary patience, self-control and bravery," Chief Doran said in the conclusion of the video. "And the men and women of the Loveland Police Department strive every day to fulfill this mandate. There is not a single member of this department who does not feel the burden when we fall short. And to that end, we will fully examine this incident to ensure we maintain the highest standards of excellence expected by the community."

Because this remains under investigation, the officer has not been identified and the department is not releasing the body camera footage.