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Idaho Officer's Accusation: Police Chief Broke My Neck

Sgt. Kirk Rush files tort claim alleging harm at the hands of Boise Police Chief Ryan Lee
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 27, 2022 1:52 PM CDT
Idaho Officer Alleges Police Chief Broke His Neck
Stock photo of a police officer, hopefully with an uninjured neck.   (Getty Images)

An Idaho police officer alleges his department's chief broke his neck while demonstrating an unusual neck restraint last October. CBS News explains that state law requires a person who intends to sue a government agency to first file a tort claim, which that agency can then respond to. Sgt. Kirk Rush's tort claim alleges Boise Police Chief Ryan Lee entered the briefing room on Oct. 12 and, without warning, "grabbed the back of Sgt. Rush's neck and forced him toward the ground. Sgt. Rush was unprepared for the force employed by Chief Lee. [He] then proceeded to hold Sgt. Rush's neck and physically moved Sgt. Rush around the briefing room by the neck."

The claim states that upon releasing Rush, Lee next struck his forehead, reports the Idaho Statesman. "Sgt. Rush’s neck hyperextended backwards and audibly cracked," reads the claim. The Idaho Press reports Rush states in the claim that he filed a complaint with HR, but that HR chose not to investigate. Rush reportedly underwent surgery on Jan. 27 in order to repair injured discs in his neck.

Rush alleges Lee selected him intentionally due to the differing opinion the two men have on how Rush manages the department's K-9 unit. Rush claims Lee doesn't agree with the "bite and hold" method the unit employs, preferring instead a "bark and hold" approach where the dogs refrain from biting unless the suspect won't surrender. Rush says changing the methodology would require new dogs or more training. (More Idaho stories.)

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