Clayton Shriver (2020)
On May 15, 2020, Westminster Colorado Police Department officers Michael Owen and Tyler Farson were called about a man causing a disturbance at a fast food restaurant that was located inside of a large retail store. The man would not leave the seating area, which had been closed due to COVID concerns, and was yelling profanities. Owen encountered Shriver, who attempted to leave the restaurant after several minutes. Owen stopped Shriver to investigate if a crime had been committed, and grabbed Shriver and forced him to the ground. Owen claims that Shriver kicked him, resulting in Owen twice using his Taser on Shriver. Farson arrived and helped to handcuff Shriver. An ambulance was called.
Shriver was charged with trespassing, obstructing a police officer, and resisting arrest. The charges were later dismissed.
In February 2021, Owen resigned from the department.
In April 2021, Shriver filed a notice of intent to sue the department.
After the department was informed of Shriver's lawsuit, an internal investigation was launched. The investigator reviewed witness statements and the video footage, but did not interview the officers. The investigation cleared the officers, finding that the use of force was within policy, that the officers used sound judgment, and the officers' training was sufficient.
A civilian review board and department leadership upheld the investigation's findings.
In May 2021, Farson resigned from the department.
On January 14, 2022, Shriver filed a civil rights lawsuit against the city and the two officers, claiming violations of his Fourth Amendment rights due to the use of excessive force, false arrest, and malicious prosecution, and that the department had failed to properly train the officers.
At the time of the incident, Westminster officers were not equipped with body-worn cameras.
In January 2022, surveillance video was released that shows some of the interaction but not the physical confrontation.
- Elise Schmelzer, Westminster defends actions of ex-officers sued over Taser use, releases video of Walmart incident, The Denver Post, 2022-01-21
- Statement, Westminster Police Department, 2022-01-19
- Shriver v City of Westminster, U.S. District Court, 2022-01-14
- Clayton Shivers Arrest, Westminster Police Department YouTube Channel, 2022-01-19