State to conduct independent review after Woods Cross Police sergeant points gun at 10-year-old
WOODS CROSS, Utah — The State of Utah will conduct an independent investigation of a June 6 incident in which a Woods Cross Police sergeant pointed a gun at a young black boy.
Woods Cross Police Chief Chad Soffe had previously requested an investigation by the Davis County Attorney’s Office, but such an investigation would be limited to an investigation into possible criminal conduct.
“[Woods Cross] City, however, seeks a broader review than just possible criminal conduct. Following a request by Chief Soffe, the State of Utah has agreed to conduct an independent investigation of the matter to review not only possible criminal conduct but also whether the officer acted with any bias or engaged in racial profiling, the propriety of the force used under the circumstances, and whether any policies were violated,” a news release from a law firm representing the city said.
On June 6, a police pursuit led officers to a West Bountiful neighborhood, where 10-year-old DJ Hrubes was playing in the front yard of a home.
Officers with several agencies in southern Davis County were looking for a shooting suspect. At some point during the manhunt, a Woods Cross officer drew a gun on DJ.
While Woods Cross Police maintain the officer held the gun in the “low ready” position toward DJ, the boy’s mother told FOX 13 the gun was pointed at his head.
“I run outside and there’s a police officer with his weapon pointed to my son’s head,” said DJ’s mom, Jerri Hrubes. “I really thought they were going to shoot my little boy.”
Officials with the West Bountiful and Woods Cross police departments have given different descriptions of the suspect they were looking for that morning.
“We had a one, possibly Hispanic suspect out on foot, and we knew there was at least another suspect involved,” said Lt. Adam Osoro, Woods Cross PD, on the day of the pursuit.
West Bountiful Police also described the outstanding suspect as a “possible Hispanic male” that day.
Those descriptions differ from one given by Chief Soffe four days later.
“Two black males were said to be in the vehicle that was white that we were chasing, pursuing. One came out over the radio that one black man was driving the vehicle,” Soffe said in a June 10 press conference.
Woods Cross Police’s request for a comprehensive review of the facts and circumstances in the case calls for the Department of Public Safety to look into “questions of racial bias or profiling,” “questions of improper use of force,” “violations of policies” and “any possible criminal misconduct.”