HOUSTON Closing arguments are expected Monday in the trial of a former Houston Police officer, the first of four to stand trial for the videotaped beating of a 15-year-old burglar.
Andrew Blomberg, 29, is charged with official oppression. His encounter with suspect Chad Holley back in 2010 lasts four seconds on the surveillance video that captured the arrest. Prosecutors allege he used his right foot to stomp on or near Holley s head and neck area when he was the first officer to reach the suspect who had just jumped over the hood of a police car and rolled onto his stomach to surrender.
Blomberg, testifying in his own defense, says he was actually aiming at Holley s right arm in an attempt to push or sweep the arm down toward his back so that he could be handcuffed. Prosecutors got him to admit on the stand, however, that the stomp or sweep he used is neither an accepted or taught police procedure.
But Maurice Cook, a former chief of the Texas Rangers called as a witness for the defense, said that in the course of a fast-moving arrest he does not feel that Blomberg did anything wrong.
Defense Attorney Dick DeGuerin repeatedly asked in cross examinations for the jury to take the entire police chase of several dangerous burglary suspects into account, not just the four seconds that Blomberg is shown assisting in Holley s arrest.
If convicted, Blomberg could get up to one year in prison.
Holley was later convicted of the burglary charge and sentenced to probation.