Seventy-three-year-old Karen Garner suffered a fractured arm and dislocated shoulder after her June 2020 arrest. But recently released video revealed how funny the arresting officers found the incident.
Garner’s lawyer, Sarah Schielke, shared video footage on Monday that showed two Loveland police officers laughing and congratulating themselves for arresting the elderly woman who also has dementia, Denver Post reports. Garner’s family members said the violent arrest not only put her in the hospital but worsened her dementia symptoms and led to her barely speaking.
They put her in an assisted living facility last August over their fears of her living alone. “She hasn’t come back the way she was before,” her daughter-in-law Shannon Steward said. “It was too much.”
The disturbing video showed the arresting officers, Austin Hopp and Daria Jalali, in the precinct’s booking area laughing and applauding each other for the violent arrest while Garner sat handcuffed to a bench in a nearby cell.
“Ready for the pop?” Garner’s lawyer claimed Hopp said to other officers while re-watching the footage in the video. “What popped?” the other officer asked. “I think it was her shoulder,” Hopp said in response.
“I can’t believe I threw a 73-year-old on the ground,” Hopp is reportedly heard saying in the video. While watching the footage of the arrest for several minutes, Jalali is heard saying “I hate this.” But Hopp responded by expressing how “great” the gruesome arrest was. “I love this,” he added.
Garner’s family was sickened by the disturbing footage that showed how excited the officers appeared to be after fracturing the grandmother’s arm and dislocating her shoulder.
“To hear that tone in someone’s voice, to get that tone in your head, it just stirs you to more anger,” Steward said. The grandmother of nine has never been able to tell her family what happened to her that day. After picking her up from the hospital the only thing she asked was, “Why did they hurt me?”
Garner was arrested on June 26, 2020, after Walmart employees reported she had stolen $13 worth of products. Her family claims she just forgot to pay for the items. After violently arresting Garner, she reportedly didn’t receive any medical attention for over six hours after her arrest.
Bodycam footage of the incident wasn’t released until April 14 after Garner’s family filed a federal lawsuit. The Loveland Police Department has since placed Hopp on administrative leave while Jalali was reassigned to administrative duties pending an investigation. But the Garner family is confused over what needs to be investigated and wants the officers fired and charged for the crime.
“There are great police officers out there and there always will be,” Garner’s daughter Alissa Swartz said. “It’s the ones that do not do their job correctly. They want to feel that power.”