Detroit Police Officers Charged With Willful Neglect Of Duty

DETROIT (WWJ) – Two Detroit Police officers are facing willful neglect of duty charges for a police chase that ended with the death of a teenager.

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy alleges that Officers Stephen Heid and Ronald Cadez ignored department policy and engaged in a chase last October near I-94 and Dickerson Avenue.

The officers were after 19-year-old Jerry Bradford, Jr. when they broke off the chase. Bradford was killed when his car slammed into a tree at a high rate of speed. It’s alleged the rookie officers Heid, 26, and Cadez, 28, drove by the crash and then circled back 10 minutes later, trying to cover up their involvement in the chase.

“They did not notify dispatch. That is the primary responsibility of the engaging officer,” police commissioner Willie Bell said last October. “Get on that radio, that’s why it’s there. To utilize it and call for some form of supervision at that point in time.”

The officers were suspended shortly after the incident.

“The officers did not comply with chase policy,” Bell said. “Chase policy being, you must announce your intention of chasing a car.”

Willful neglect of duty is a misdemeanor that carries a maximum sentence of one year in prison. Heid and Cadez are expected to be arraigned on the charge on Monday, March 5 in 36th District Court.


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