A veteran Rhode Island police officer was charged with misdemeanor simple assault for allegedly kicking and striking a man who was handcuffed in the rear of a police cruiser, authorities said Thursday.
Warwick police Sgt. Britton Kelly, 55, was freed on personal recognizance at his arraignment, state Attorney General Peter Neronha and Warwick police chief Col. Bradford Connor said in a joint statement. He did not enter a plea, which is normal for a district court arraignment.
A voicemail seeking comment was left with his attorney.
Kelly and other city officers responded to a domestic violence incident on July 15 and arrested a woman, the statement said.
A 17-year veteran of Warwick, Rhode Island's police department has been charged with misdemeanor simple assault.
During the arrest, the woman's husband attempted to physically pull one of the officers away from her. Officers then arrested the man and placed him in the rear of a police vehicle with a seat belt on.
Kelly allegedly went to the vehicle, kicked the man in the head and then struck him in the face before forcibly removing him from the vehicle, authorities said.
Per protocol, city police reported the incident to the attorney general's office, which investigated.
Kelly, a 17-year department veteran, has been suspended with pay, Connor said. He is due back in court on Aug. 10.