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Antioch officers cite “industrial injuries” to resist subpoenas

Flickr / Creative Commons

The Mercury-News reports that the five officers claim that they can’t comply with the subpoenas to answer questions due to “industrial injuries.”

According to law enforcement sources, one of the five officers is a K-9 officer and the prime focus of the FBI probe regarding police corruption. He was allowed to keep his canine partner while on leave and claimed that he injured himself while walking the dog.

Antioch Police Chief Steven Ford – who took over the embattled department last year – said he has signed statements from the five officers that they had not been cleared by their physicians to appear in court.

The five officers were scheduled to testify at a hearing this Friday on the Antioch police department's alleged violations of the Racial Justice Act. The hearing could result in serious criminal charges being dismissed against four men accused of committing a series of gang-related shootings.

Ford, an African American – who is himself the target of racist texts – didn’t respond to a Mercury-News request for comment. But defense attorneys for the men allegedly involved in the shootings said they were skeptical of the officers’ claims of industrial injuries.

The Antioch police department has been under FBI investigation for more than a year regarding alleged police corruption. This includes the transmission of racist text messages that involve at least 40 percent of the officers on the force.