St. Paul Police Officer Charged with Federal Civil Rights Offense
Brett Palkowitsch, 31, an officer with the St. Paul Police Department, was indicted on Jan. 16 by a federal grand jury in Minneapolis for using excessive force against an arrestee, announced Assistant Attorney General Eric Dreiband of the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division and FBI Minneapolis Special Agent in Charge Jill Sanborn.
Today’s indictment charges Palkowitsch with a single count of deprivation of rights under color of law, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 242. The indictment alleges that Palkowitsch used unreasonable force when he kicked arrestee F.B. repeatedly while F.B. was on the ground and in the grips of a police canine, resulting in bodily injury.
The indictment carries a maximum penalty of 10 years of imprisonment and a $250,000 fine. An indictment is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.
This case was investigated by the Minneapolis Division of the FBI, and is being prosecuted by Trial Attorneys Christopher J. Perras and Zachary Dembo of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.