TOLLESON (3TV/CBS) – Gov. Doug Ducey says he believes the Glendale Police Department’s investigation into the incident in which an officer tased a man nearly a dozen times “was whitewashed” and that he “would love” to see the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office step in.
MCAO released a statement shortly after that, saying "further investigation is warranted."
Arizona’s Family caught up with the governor after he met with teachers and students at Tolleson High School Wednesday.
He had just enough time to answer one question from us. We asked about his office’s involvement with the investigation.
“What I saw on that videotape did not represent the law enforcement that I know in the state of Arizona,” Ducey said. “It was (pause) of course, you don’t like to make a statement on a videotape, but what I saw was completely unacceptable. And it seems to me that the investigation was whitewashed. I’d love to see the County Attorney’s Office reopen the investigation and get to the bottom of what happened there and hold people accountable.”
A few hours after the governor's comments, MCAO said it "has sent materials to the Phoenix Office of the FBI in connection to the 2017 incident ...."
“After having personally reviewed all available video evidence, I have determined further investigation is warranted," Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery said in a statement released to media outlets. "In order to ensure the public's confidence in any future determination of whether the use of force was lawful, review by an uninvolved agency is appropriate.”
MCAO, which originally opted not to prosecute the officers involed, said it would not be releasing anything else "at this time" and the FBI has not commented.
The City of Glendale said in a statement released Wednesday evening that it was aware of "the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office decision to re-examine the incident" and "committed to fully cooperating" with that endeavor before Ducey's comments.
"We have no basis to believe that the County Attorney’s original investigation was not thorough and comprehensive, and we accepted their findings," reads that statement, going on to explain that Wheatcroft and his family had offered to settle "for the absurd amount of $15 million" in December, before the "videotape" to which Ducey referred was made public.
That "videotape" is body camera video of a July 2017 incident. That video came to light last week. The Glendale Police Department has since released videos recorded from other angles and dozens of photos.
[RAW VIDEO: Body cam video of incident involving Glendale PD]
In the video, Officers Matt Schneider is seen tasing a man named Johnny Wheatcroft 11 times.
Wheatcroft, along with his wife and children, is suing the Glendale Police Department, alleging excessive use of force. The complaint file in court uses the word “torture” six times.
The Glendale Police Department said it suspended Schneider for three days in connection with the incident.
Wheatcroft, through his lawyer, is calling for Schneider to be fired.
"This case will ultimately be decided on all the facts including a comprehensive analysis of all the evidence," reads the City of Glendale's statement.
[APP USERS: Click here for statement from City of Glendale]