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Press Release

Former Louisville Metro Police Department Officer Pleads Guilty to Using Excessive Force During 2020 Protest

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

A former Louisville Metro Police Department officer pleaded guilty to violating an individual’s rights by using excessive force while acting as a police officer.

During the plea hearing, Richard Ross Wiedo, 37, admitted that on or about May 30, 2020, while working as a police officer with the Louisville Metro Police Department, he deployed a foam round from his 40mm direct impact munition into a crowd of protestors after a bottle was thrown from the back of the crowd. The foam round struck an individual at the front of the crowd in the face. Wiedo admitted he had not identified who had thrown the bottle and was not deploying his 40mm direct impact munition at anyone who was being actively aggressive. 

Wiedo pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of using unreasonable force. Wiedo’s guilty plea carries a maximum fine of $100,000. As part of the plea agreement, if it is accepted by the court, Wiedo will forfeit his Kentucky law enforcement certification and agree not to seek any future law enforcement employment.

Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, U.S. Attorney Michael A. Bennett for the Western District of Kentucky and Special Agent in Charge Jodi Cohen of the FBI Louisville Field Office made the announcement.

The FBI Louisville Field Office and the Louisville Metro Police Department’s Public Integrity Unit investigated the case through the Louisville Public Corruption Civil Rights Task Force.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Amanda E. Gregory for the Western District of Kentucky and Trial Attorney Anita Channapati of the Civil Rights Division’s Criminal Section prosecuted the case.

Updated May 10, 2023

Civil Rights
Press Release Number: 23-536