CLEVELAND– A Cleveland police officer has been suspended for 20 days without pay for his actions when asked to check a downed power line last fall.
Officer Gary Stiegelmeyer received the discipline Wednesday following a brief disciplinary hearing in the office of Cleveland Public Safety Director Martin Flask.
Stiegelmeyer was asked to check on a downed power line in the area of East 130th and Iroquois on November 1.
911 records state FirstEnegy was notified and Officer Stiegelmeyer was sent to the scene. The officer, however, reported around 9:30 in the morning on November 1 that he only saw a downed phone line. A few hours later, 12-year-old Gasia Thomas touched the wire and was shocked.
The girl is being treated at a rehab facility. Cleveland Division of Police Integrity Control section reviewed the case after being ordered to do so by Police Chief Michael McGrath.
Atty. Pat D’Angelo, who represents the officer, says Stiegelmeyer feels awful about the situation. He says Stiegelmeyer couldn’t speak because of a pending lawsuit
The girl’s family has since filed a lawsuit against FirstEnergy, and the city of Cleveland, alleging the lines should have been properly maintained. FirstEnergy officials have declined to comment since the case is pending.
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