Feds oppose delaying Muncie officers’ excessive force trial

Federal prosecutors are objecting to an effort by four Muncie police officers to delay their trial on allegations they used excessive force during arrests or tried to cover up that misconduct.

The officers are set to stand trial in U.S. District Court in Indianapolis on Sept. 21 — a date attorneys in the case agreed to last November, according to Acting U.S. Attorney John Childress.

But Childress said in a recent motion that lawyers for officers Chase Winkle, Jeremy Gibson, Joseph Krejsa and Corey Posey now want to have the trial, which has already been postponed three times, reset for January 2022.

He said they are seeking the delay in large part because prosecutors in April added a fourth defendant, Posey, who faces “a single false report charge,” The Star Press reported.

At that time, additional allegations of excessive force and false reporting were also added to the counts already pending against Winkle and Gibson.

“Defendants have ample time to prepare for trial,” Childress wrote in his motion, which said the government requests that a federal judge deny their request for the new delay.

He also said “the public interest favors maintaining the trial date,” and noted the Muncie officers are charged with “serious civil rights and obstruction offenses in connection with seven different victims.”

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