Law enforcement trainer, ex-cop back officer in shoplifting video

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A former Davenport mayor and ex-policeman says he hopes public pressure won't derail the career of a Davenport police officer caught punching a female shoplifter back in February.

Phil Yerington served on the force for more than 30 years and says he believes Officer Scott Crow stepped over the line, but deserves support and a second chance.

"When Officer Crow worked for me, he was a good officer. These are not bad guys they just went overboard in a bad situation," Yerington said. "If I was the Chief, I would not fire them. They need to be disciplined, they may need remedial training or anger management. Maybe the whole department needs that," he said.

"I've had plenty of times where emotion over-rides your ability to think straight," he said.

Ron Barber runs an online police video training company out of St. Louis called In The Line of Duty, and says the officers over-reacted during the arrest, but supports them, too.

"If you don't want to get your ass kicked by the cops, learn to obey what the officers tell you and learn to use common sense. She didn't do either one," Barber said.

Barber and Yerington agreed there were other options in the situation, including  Barber says, a technique called "verbal judo," which involves talking down an agitated, upset suspect, to defuse the situation instead of using physical force. Still he says, he won't second guess the officer's move that day.

"Sometimes when cops have to go hands on it's like sausage being made, it's ugly. It's violent. You don't want to see it. it's the nature of the beast. I'm sorry it happened. This woman put herself in this situation and paid the price," he said.