Canton officer who threatened to execute concealed handgun license-holder now under investigation for THIRD violent outburst

by Chad D. Baus

Officer Daniel Harless, who is currently under investigation for threatening to execute a concealed handgun license-holder during a traffic stop, and for a separate incident in which he threatened to send the suspects "to the grave" if they moved, adding, "I will shoot you in the face and I'll go to sleep tonight," is now also under investigation for a THIRD incident which was also caught on tape.

WEWS (ABC Cleveland) has uncovered still another video in which Officer Harless threatens to kill two suspects.

From the article:

NewsChannel5 investigators have obtained a third dash cam video showing a Canton police officer making death threats during a traffic stop in December 2010.

On the video, Officer Daniel Harless and his partner pull a car over for no apparent reason. After interrogating the passengers inside about their activities, you hear Harless threaten one passenger.

Harless said, "If you scratch you balls wrong, I'm going to pull my gun and I am going to shoot you."

An internal affairs investigation concluded that Harless violated three department rules and regulations during the stop.

Investigators also found Harless violated the same three rules during two other stops where he was captured on dash cam video yelling, swearing and threatening to kill people during traffic stops.

The rules Harless is accused of breaking include deportment, cooperation with the public and treatment of persons in custody.

In fact, The Repository has previously reported that the department has investigated numerous complaints against Officer Harless date back to 2000.

Again from WEWS:

NewsChannel5 Investigator Sarah Buduson asked Canton Police Chief Dean McKimm how Harless was able to get away with his bad behavior.

Buduson: "Why didn't you know this was going on?"
McKimm: "I don't understand your question."

Buduson: "You've been in charge for a long time (9 years), how come you didn't know about Harless's behavior?"
McKimm: "Because there was no evidence Harless was a problem."

NewsChannel5 obtained more than 700 pages of records on Harless from Canton police. The records showed there have been a total of 18 internal affairs complaints against Harless since 2000.

In 15 of the cases, Harless was exonerated.

"Each one of the complaints was investigated and they're investigated thoroughly and completely," said McKimm.

"It depends on the situation," said Chief Dean McKimm, when Sarah Buduson asked him if the number of complaints against Harless is normal.

View the most recent dash cam video here:

WEWS reports that, as result of the internal affairs investigation into all three videos, Harless was placed on administrative leave and will face a disciplinary hearing Sept. 7. Harless could lose his job at the hearing.

Meanwhile, the City of Canton continues to press charges against William Bartlett, the CHL-holder who was the subject of Harless' rage in the original dash cam video that gained so much attention. His trial is currently scheduled to begin on Thursday, October 6th. Buckeye Firearms Foundation has made a donation of $1000 to Bartlett's legal defense fund, and we stand by ready to help if more is requested and needed to achieve justice.

Chad D. Baus is the Buckeye Firearms Association Vice Chairman.

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