Probation for two cops involved in fatal chokehold arrest

Mitch Henriques (Picture: Facebook/Mitch Henriquez)Mitch Henriques (Picture: Facebook/Mitch Henriquez)

Two police officers were put on probation as punishment for their involvement in the fatal arrest of Mitch Henriquez in The Hague last year, police chief Paul Musscher announced in a press conference on Thursday.

The two police officers will be permanently dismissed if they do anything wrong for one year. They are also not allowed to use any means of violence on the street in that time. The police chief also stressed that the officers did not deliberately try to take the life of Henriquez.

The 42-year-old Aruban man died one day after being arrested at a music festival in The Hague on June 27th, 2015. An autopsy determined that he most likely suffocated due to hard handed treatment from the officers who arrested him. This hard handed treatment included a chokehold and pepper spray. The unconscious Henriquez was then dragged into a police van, instead of an ambulance being called.

The police did an internal investigation into this fatal arrest. In October the results were announced - one of the five officers involved was found guilty of dereliction of duty the other four were found guilty of serious dereliction of duty. Their punishments were only announced today. Two officers were put on probation. The other two were given a written warning. 

These punishments are unrelated to a lawsuit facing two of the five officers involved in Henriquez' death. The two officers are being prosecuted for using the pepper spray and chokehold on Henriquez. They are facing charges of assault resulting in death and culpable homicide.