David Clifford fired from MPD following felony assault conviction [UPDATE]

Categories: Crime, Police
Thumbnail image for david clifford rect.jpg
One near-fatal punch cost Clifford his job and will probably land him in prison.
-- Original post from morning of May 21; update at bottom --

A month following his conviction for two counts of felony assault and another count of misdemeanor assault, former Minneapolis SWAT team executive officer David Clifford is out of a job.

THE BACKSTORY: David Clifford, Mpls SWAT team leader, convicted of felony assault [VIDEO]

Clifford nearly killed Star Tribune advertising employee Brian Vander Lee with a single punch to the head on the patio of Tanners Bar in Andover last June. Following his arrest, he was placed on paid administrative leave from the MPD, but according to numerous reports, the two-time recipient of the MPD's Medal of Honor has now officially been fired.

In a statement released following Clifford's conviction, MPD Chief Janeé Harteau characterized his actions as "not consistent with our department core values and high standards."

Clifford, 48, is scheduled to be sentenced July 11.

:::: UPDATE ::::

Though some questioned why it took the MPD a month to terminate Clifford following his conviction, it appears MPD officials initially made their move to fire him this winter.

From the Pioneer Press:
After an "exhaustive" internal affairs investigation, Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau took action in February to fire David Clifford, a nearly 20-year veteran of the police force, according to information provided by Minneapolis police.

The action was delayed when Clifford, 48, appealed the decision and filed a grievance under his rights as a member of the Police Federation of Minneapolis.

The union withdrew the grievance after a jury found him guilty of assault April 13, prompting his termination April 22 for "violating the Minneapolis Police Department's Code of Ethics," Minneapolis police said.
-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at arupar@citypages.com.


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30 comments
mohanlon3
mohanlon3

Tough guy cop is going to have a real bad time in prison, he's about to be somebody's dutiful little Jenny...

mohanlon3
mohanlon3

Jesus watch the footage, victim's hands were below waist level when he stood up, he didn't even make a fist, then the cop RUNS AWAY right after punching him.  This is cut and dried, it was not self defense in any way.  He was completely unjustified in hitting the guy.  Nice try on the self defense claim, too bad there was a camera that caught the assault and does not lie.  Dude does not deserve permanent brain injury for being a loudmouth.

Kent Klinger
Kent Klinger

Everybody is so informed on what went down and what it takes to subdue someone that's going to commit an assault. It's the same way with the left when it comes to the right to defend oneself, family or private property with a Firearm. No one is supposed to be able to defend themselves. Maybe he was excessive but apparently it only took a limited amount of force to render said victim "near death".

David Lloyd
David Lloyd

You have no fucking clue what happened do you.

Beatrice
Beatrice

Ridiculous that he is only being fired now--almost a year after the incident happened and a month after he was convicted of a felony.  Anyone who thinks we are getting new blood with Harteau as chief is sadly mistaken.  She has cozied up to the police union and was doing their bidding by allowing this POS to stay on the payroll--earning a salary while at home and upping his pension in the process.  Due process?  Why was Schnickel (the perv who was hooking up with teen girls) fired immediately then?

Paul Lockman
Paul Lockman

And if the story would of unfolded the other way around that guy would have got the book thrown at him for assaulting an officer what a joke .

mrdave
mrdave

I wonder how long until this blows over and he is re-hired.

Rob Bidgood
Rob Bidgood

Subduing him until on-duty, uniformed police officers arrived would have been one thing. Beating him to death is quite another. He should have known the difference.

Aaron Hamm
Aaron Hamm

Ben, I think you fat fingered the "a" key.

Oscar Quella
Oscar Quella

Ben, you must still be on prison rules. This is the outside where we shouldn't be acting like that.

Charles D. Rhoden III
Charles D. Rhoden III

Like the loud drunk at the bar who did not appear to deserve to be nearly killed, Ben is entitled to his belief, irrelevant as it may be.

Stacey Mickle
Stacey Mickle

Ben. You should probably be more informed on this topic before you start speaking like a IDIOT!

Dean131
Dean131

It took a month AFTER his felony conviction to fire him?

Charles D. Rhoden III
Charles D. Rhoden III

Being loud at a bar is no rationale for nearly killing someone. Else half of the population would be dead or injured.

Josie Johnson
Josie Johnson

He was actually fired when he was charged. I believe back in February. Why they are just now making it public is beyond me.

Ben Schwelling
Ben Schwelling

Great message to belligerent drunks out there. Talk Shit in your drunken stupor, and if someone treats you like a msn by kicking your ass, he will be fired. That cop should have gotten a high five for kicking that guys ass. Wtf is this world coming to?

David Lloyd
David Lloyd

So the offense happened a year ago and he was convicted a month ago but they're only getting around to firing him now? Really?

fahq
fahq

Karma is a bitch!

mohanlon3
mohanlon3

@Kent Klinger you're an idiot, there is no case where the police are trained to punch a person to subdue them, and since I DO train police in restraints for subduing an assault, I know what I am talking about.  Go back to driving your truck and let the non-idiots discuss this issue.  Punching a drunk in the face and jug-heading him is not "self defense" and the footage clearly shows the cop sucker punched the guy BIGTIME.  I have also been a bouncer professionally and if I saw this at my jobI would call the cops.  Furthermore, all the cop had to do was enter the bar and tell the staff they have an unruly patron and let them handle it, OR LEAVE.  He had ZERO reason to approach the drunk and escalate and as a cop should know that.  It only takes 8lbs of pressure to break a neck, and 15 pounds of pressure to cause massive brain hemorrhage, since most folks hit the ground with hundreds of pounds of force per square inch it is very easy to cause massive head trauma without much force, that's why police are trained to subdue WITHOUT PUNCHING people.  Your argument is baseless and stupid.

digitalprotocol
digitalprotocol topcommenter

@Kent Klinger are you a fkn COP


your comment has zero context

_Joe_
_Joe_

@Beatrice Schnickel didn't appeal.

It comes down to math.  Sometimes it's cheaper to keep someone on the payroll until the paperwork is in order.  Otherwise you run the risk of getting sued, losing, and paying out hundreds of thousands of dollars.  It's just business.

Drewey
Drewey topcommenter

@Benjamin Schwelling You sir are an idiot.  Mature adults practice restraint and use positive conflict resolution.  Knuckle dragging neanderthals with low IQ just start swinging.  Get some therapy and hope that you don't get the shit slapped out of you by a like minded individual the next time you are being a dumb fuck at the bar.

mohanlon3
mohanlon3

@keny Because the President is directly involved in the judicial branch and the decisions they make.  Any more out your ass completely dumb things to say on this story?  The fort hood shooter was a member of OUR OWN MILITARY and cannot be designated a foreign combatant or terrorist.  Notice he is listed as Major Nidal Hasan  MAJOR being a military rank.  He's a murderer and a felon, not a terrorist.  Too bad for dip-shits like you who want to live in a country where citizens who don't agree with your knee jerk conservative bullshit can be designated an enemy combatant at the whim of some totalitarian asshat.  Because that's what 'Murica is all about, violating peoples rights if they are different from you, or brown, or have a funny name.  Now go fuck off and tell your Mom you want to use the car this weekend...

jsonwerner
jsonwerner

i can't hear you through your tinfoil hat

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