Two Cops Indicted in Alleged UMD Beating

By Chris Gordon and Matthew Stabley
|  Wednesday, Sep 21, 2011  |  Updated 4:29 PM EDT
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Two Prince George's County police officers were indicted Tuesday in the beating of a University of Maryland student. The charges stem from a celebration that turned violent after the school's basketball win over Duke last year.

Chris Gordon

Two Prince George's County police officers were indicted Tuesday in the beating of a University of Maryland student. The charges stem from a celebration that turned violent after the school's basketball win over Duke last year.

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Two Prince George's County police officers indicted Tuesday for allegedly beating up a student celebrating the University of Maryland's men's basketball team's win over Duke in March 2010 were processed and released on bond Wednesday.

After a 16-month investigation, a grand jury indicted Special Operations Division officers Reginald Baker and James Harrison each with first-degree assault, second-degree assault and misconduct in office in the beating of student Jack McKenna, Prince George's County State's Attorney Angela Alsobrooks said. The suspects are accused of repeatedly striking the student with a riot baton.

Baker and Harrison turned themselves in Wednesday and were processed and released on $75,000 bond.

A third accused and suspended officer was not charged.

McKenna's attorney said his client is gratified. The charges are correct, he said, and he hopes the federal investigation will lead to federal charges as well.

Police arrested 28 students that and two were charged, including McKenna, but those charges were later dropped after video of the March 3 incident surfaced.

Prince George's County Police Chief Mark Magaw's internal affairs unit investigated the allegations and he supports their findings, Alsobrooks said.

Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 89 said both officers have had "long and exemplary" careers.

"We believe that it would be irresponsible and unfair to rush to judgment," read a statement from the FOP. "We respectfully ask that you allow the judicial system to weigh all the facts of this case and determine the guilt or innocence of these officers as it would for any other citizen."

"This wasn't a question of finding them guilty beyond a reasonable doubt," said James McKenna, Jack's grandfather. "This was just an issued of holding them for trial, that's all, and leave it to the petit jury to discover whether or not there is proof beyond a reasonable doubt."

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