Officer disciplined in deadly police chase gets job back
CLEVELAND – A Cleveland police sergeant fired for his role in the November 2012 police chase and shooting has been given his job back.
According to the Fraternal Order of Police President Lt. Brian Bentley, an arbitrator ruled that Sgt. Michael Donegan will return to work July 11 as a patrol officer. Donegan will get back pay at a patrol officer rate from the time he was fired until when he starts. The ruling states Donegan will remain a patrol officer for a year, and then will be re-promoted to sergeant.
Bentley told FOX 8 News that two other supervisors, Paul Wilson and Ulrich Zouhar, who were demoted, will only be demoted until July 11. Wilson will return to his rank of Lieutenant and Zouhar will return to his rank of captain. Neither Wilson nor Zouhar will get back pay, Bentley said.
Maureen Harper, spokeswoman for the city, released the following statement: “We are not happy with the arbitrator’s decision. We believe the decision is wrong and we will appeal.”
The chase took place November 29, 2012 after an officer at the Justice Center thought someone in the suspects’ car fired a shot at him.
The chase ended in East Cleveland, when 13 officers fired 137 shots, killing the two suspects, Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams. The suspects were unarmed.