Preston Sowl (2019)

From LEO Ratings
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On Sept. 22, 2019, Loveland Colorado Police Department Officer Paul Ashe arrested Preston Sowl, who was a witness to an accident and refused to cooperate with Ashe in his investigation. Ashe cited Sowl with obstruction of a peace officer and resisting arrest, but the 8th Judicial District Attorney’s office later dismissed the charge.[1] The arrest was recorded on Ashe's body-worn camera.[2]

On June 22, 2020, Sowl filed a lawsuit[3] in the U.S. District Court in Denver against the city and four police officers (Ashe, Officer Benjamin DeLima, Detective Clint Schnorr, and Sergeant Brian Bartnes) in which he alleged that they violated his constitutional rights under the First, Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments.[1]

On Jan 11, 2021, court documents seem to show the case was resolved.[4]

On January 25, 2021, the city settled the case for $290,000. The settlement documents explicitly state that it is not an admission of guilt on behalf of the city or the four officers. [1]

On May 7, 2021, Police Chief Robert Ticer wrote an internal memo and determined the witness had not committed a crime and the officer was not justified in arresting him. Ticer recommended a written warning and more training for the officer.[5]

On June 25, 2021, the city announced the completion of its investigation, noting that Ashe violated department policies, including Limits of Authority and Exercise of Discretion, Search and Seizure, and Use of Force.[6]

By October 8, 2021, Ashe had been placed on unpaid administrative leave by the department.[7]


Body-worn camera footage

Officers Involved

Official Reports

Additional Sources