Photo: Shandy Cobane
On April 17th, 2010, in Seattle, Washington, detective Shandy Cobane stomped on a Latino suspect, and said he would “beat the f*cking Mexican piss out of” him, and the incident was even caught on tape. However, last week it was announced that he would not lose his job with the Seattle Police Department.
Instead, Cobane’s punishment is a 30-day suspension without pay, and he will be demoted from the gang unit and made a patrol officer in a precinct that is yet to be determined.
Seattle Police Chief John Diaz said he would have fired Cobane if he hadn’t thought it would be overturned on appeal.
The video shows Cobane making the Mexican statement just before he stomps on the man’s arm. Officer Mary Woollum is also seen stomping the man once. The man was later released and was not charged with anything.
Chief Diaz said that from now on, if an officer makes a derogatory racial statement, he or she will be fired, and the precedent set by this case should not apply.
Along with the suspension, which is the maximum punishment short of termination, Cobane will have to attend race and community outreach training, and is expected to sign a “last-chance agreement” which states that his Seattle police career will be over he is found guilty of major misconduct again.
Local Latino leaders are outraged however, and say Cobane should have been fired.
While Cobane said he is “grateful for a second chance” the man he stomped on, Martin Monetti Jr., is demanding that Seattle take responsibility for the detective’s actions. His attorney said the decision to not fire Cobane was “disappointing.”
“Because it was pretty obvious that he engaged in misconduct,” said attorney Lorena Gonzalez. “He used racial slurs, and he used excessive force on a person who wasn’t doing anything, just lying on the ground. And he got away with it.”
Monetti is seeking $750,000 in damages for physical and emotional pain, lost wages, medical expenses, attorney fees and costs.