Ex-officer to plead guilty to hitting man, false reporting

PITTSBURGH (AP) – A former Pennsylvania police officer is scheduled to plead guilty to charges he deprived a suspect of his civil rights by slugging the man in the face and filing a false police report to justify his actions.

The attorney for former Redstone Township Officer Norman Howard III didn’t immediately comment on the hearing scheduled Friday afternoon before a federal judge in Pittsburgh.

Howard was indicted April 15 for the incident on May 26, 2013 in Redstone, about 35 miles south of Pittsburgh.

Prosecutors say Howard used unjustified forced when he punched a person identified only as “D.N” in the face. The indictment doesn’t detail the circumstances, but also says Howard falsified a police report when he “purposefully omitted” mention of the punch and tried to make it seem like force was justified.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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