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

by Chad D. Baus

The Canton Repository is reporting that Officer Daniel Harless, who is currently under investigation for threatening to execute a concealed handgun license-holder during a traffic stop, is now also under investigation for a second incident.

From the article:

The circumstances of the incidents differ: One, from June, involves a driver with a license to carry a concealed gun. The other, from July of last year, concerns a backseat passenger without the legal right to be armed in a vehicle.

But they both include video of patrolman Daniel Harless using profanity and threats during an early morning traffic stop.

...The Repository requested police cruiser video of the July 29, 2010, incident on Friday. Internal affairs opened the second investigation around the same time.

Harless and his partner, patrolman Mark Diels, pulled over a pickup at Reed Court and Sixth Street NW around 2:30 a.m., according to court papers, police reports and the video.

After getting the driver, who was suspected of driving drunk, and the front passenger out of the car, Harless noticed a gun on the floor next to the foot of one of the rear passengers, according to the video and police reports.

Harless pulled his weapon and ordered — in profanity laced language — the man and woman in the back seat not to move or he would shoot.

"Don't (expletive) move. Let me see your (expletive) hands," Harless shouted. "I'll kill every one of you (expletive). There's a (expletive) gun in this car. You (expletive) move, I'll shoot you in the head."

Harless also 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."

According to the article, police reports say the man and woman were eventually removed from the truck. The gun, a .25-caliber semi-automatic pistol, was found loaded with a round in the chamber.

The man with the gun at his feet pleaded guilty in March to improperly handling firearms in a motor vehicle, a felony, and was placed on probation.

Again, from the article:

Although it involves the same officer, the incident in the new video varies in several ways from the June 8 arrest of the driver with a concealed-carry license.

During the June incident, the driver told police he had a concealed-carry license, his weapon was confiscated and he was handcuffed, then Harless made threatening statements to the man after placing him in the back of a police cruiser.

In the incident from a year ago, Harless discovered a gun while two suspects were still in the truck, drew his weapon and threatened to shoot as he was making the arrest.

Police Chief Dean McKimm told The Repository he will review the results of both investigations and forward them to the safety director as one package because of the related subject matter. The chief expected to have the necessary information in a couple of weeks.

The newspaper reports that Harless, a 14-year department veteran, remains on "sick" leave. The Repository had previously reported that Canton's internal affairs unit has investigated 16 complaints involving Harless dating back to 2000.

According to the newspaper, he was reprimanded in one 2003 case. Harless and another officer were exonerated of using excessive force, but were given a letter of reprimand for not activating the in-car video camera at the scene per department policy.

The complete dash cam video of this second incident involving Harless can be viewed by clicking here.

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

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