UPPER MARLBORO, Md. — A former District Heights police officer will spend at least five years in prison for shooting a handcuffed suspect who had escaped a squad car.
A jury of six men and six women found Johnnie Riley guilty of first- and second-degree assault, use of a handgun in the commission of a crime of violence and misconduct in office. Riley was acquitted of attempted second-degree murder.
The shooting followed a traffic stop in September 2012. Riley took Kalvin Kyle into custody after learning the suspect had been riding a stolen motorcycle.
But somehow, after being handcuffed, Kyle managed to sneak out of the police cruiser, and he bolted.
Riley fired at Kyle as he ran, still in handcuffs.
The shots paralyzed Kyle from the waist down.
“This jury said that shooting a suspect in the back — even someone who is a thief — when they are running away in handcuffs, posing no immediate danger, that this is illegal conduct,” says John Erzen, a spokesman for the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office.
Riley will remain free on $100,000 bond. He is due to be sentenced July 30.