DC declines to press charges against man Metro Transit Police used stun gun on

A train arrives at the U Street Metro Station in Washington, Thursday, March 12, 2015, part of the public mass transit network for Washington. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)(AP/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia said it did not file any charges against the man who was stunned during an altercation with Metro Transit Police officers over the weekend.

Metro police received a call shortly before 6 p.m. Saturday about juveniles allegedly threatening people with sticks on the U Street station platform, according to a police statement. Officers confronted and detained a group of boys, but were unable to find any victims.

Shortly after, a man walked up to defend the boys. The situation escalated and one of the officers shoved the man and discharged a stun gun. The incident was caught on camera and posted on Twitter.

The man, 29-year-old Tapiwa Musonza, was taken into custody, but released Monday with no charges filed against him. The U.S. Attorney’s Office told WTOP this does not mean that charges would not eventually be filed.

Ward 1 D.C. Councilmember Brianne Nadeau, who represents the area where the incident occurred, issued a statement saying she had been in contact with Metro Transit Police Chief Ronald Pavlik Jr. and has asked for the officer be barred from further contact with the public while an investigation is conducted.

At-Large Councilmember Robert White wrote a letter to Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority’s board of directors, asking the board to convene a public roundtable discussion about Metro Transit Police’s tactics when dealing with minors.

“Like many residents, I am concerned about aggressive and inappropriate police tactics that are diminishing public confidence and threatening the rights and safety of local children of color,” the letter reads.

At-Large Councilmember David Grosso said he believes the officer should be removed from duty during the course of the investigation.

Ward 6 Councilmember Charles Allen also called for the officer to be withheld from having contact with the public. He also requested all police-worn body camera footage taken of the incident.

“In the video footage that I have viewed, the actions of one officer appear to significantly escalate the interaction, resulting in a dangerous physical confrontation,” Allen’s letter reads. “The use of force — both by the officer himself and through his use of a TASER — appears unjustified.”

In response to the incident, the ACLU of D.C. called for increased oversight of Metro Transit Police.

WTOP’s Jennifer Ortiz and Jack Pointer contributed to this report.

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Zeke Hartner

Zeke Hartner is a digital writer/editor who has been with WTOP since 2017. He is a graduate of North Carolina State University’s Political Science program and an avid news junkie.

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