INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Two Indianapolis police officers face felony indictments for the violent arrests of two women.
One of the officers was indicted with perjury. A Marion County grand jury took one day to decide if two Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officers went beyond reasonable force to stop two woman for violating a curfew that resulted from downtown rioting.
In the video shot by a News 8 reporter on May 31, both of the victims, Ivore Westfield and Rachel Harding, have their hands behind her backs. As other officers approach, Westfield tries to break free.
The camera was rolling as it happened. Officer Jonathan Horlock seen using a baton to hit Westfield. He was indicted with battery and official misconduct, plus perjury and obstruction of justice.
Officer Nathaniel Schauwecker was indicted with battery for pushing Harding to the ground. He also faces an indictment of official misconduct.
The grand jury met in person and returned their decision Tuesday.
“The question here is whether the officers’ conduct was reasonable or not , and so whether or not a police officer followed training or not is not a legal defense, but you cant say, ‘Well, hey, my training told me to do this’ if that conduct turns out to be unconstitutional or excessive,” said Marion County Prosecutor Ryan Mears on Wednesday when he announced the indictment.
The officers have been on administrative leave since the incident. Two other officers involved in the arrest were not indicted.
Both women have also filed a lawsuit against the city and the police department.
Both officers are expected to make their first court appearances Thursday.
Below is the Marion County prosecutor’s news conference. App views can go online to view it.