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Press Release

Anchorage Police Officer Indicted For Civil Rights Violation

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Alaska

Anchorage, Alaska – U.S. Attorney Bryan Schroder announced today that an Anchorage police officer has been indicted for Deprivation of Civil Rights Under Color of Law.

According to the indictment, Cornelius A. Pettus Jr., 33, of Anchorage, was charged with Deprivation of Civil Rights stemming from an incident which occurred while he was on duty as an Anchorage Police Officer.

The indictment alleges that on September 30, 2019, Pettus, while acting under color of law, assaulted and injured another person, thereby violating that person’s United States Constitutional rights to be free from the use of unreasonable force by a law enforcement officer. Pettus was previously charged in state court for the same incident.

Section 242 of Title 18 makes it a crime for a person acting under color of any law to willfully deprive a person of a right or privilege protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States.

The offense is a felony punishable by imprisonment up to 10 years.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) conducted the investigation leading to the indictment in this case with the assistance of Anchorage Police Department.  This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney James Klugman.   

The charges in the indictments are merely allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Updated October 23, 2020

Civil Rights
Press Release Number: 20-071