Former Paducah Police officer fired for excessive force speaks out
Michael Redmon is standing by his story, telling us he did not choke a man.
Redmon was suspended without pay in June. In September, the Paducah City Board of Commissioners found Redmon responsible for choking Joseph Cerullo in a public hearing. Cerullo’s since pleaded guilty to charges of assault, domestic violence and fleeing from police.
Redmon says he just wants to do everything he can to get the truth out and get his job back.
In the months Redmon hasn’t worn this uniform, he’s poured his time and heart into his children’s schools and softball teams. He fears he has let his two children down, but in fighting his firing, he wants to be an example for his children. Redmon says he wants them to see, "Dad didn’t give up. Sad kept going."
But Redmon says as a serviceman, time away from the department is difficult. He says, "I miss the calls, I miss going to help people in situations. That was the greatest thing about being a cop."
He’s willing to go through an all-day hearing, again in hopes of getting his job back with Paducah police. "If we follow the rules and I still lose, there’s nothing I can do," Redmon says. "I got my side out there. People know the truth, and that all that matters to me."
The man Redmon’s accused of choking, Joseph Cerullo, pleaded guilty to assault. So, he gave up his fifth amendment rights. If there’s a second trial, Cerullo would have to testify and Redmon’s attorney could cross examine.
Redmon says his rights were violated in the first hearing. He’s hoping an appeal might render a different decision. "As a police officer, we have to follow rules," he says. "We have to follow the law. They didn’t follow the law on this."
But Redmon fears the odds may be stacked against him.
"I still want my job," he says. "I still want to provide for my family. If it doesn’t work out, I’m sure I can go somewhere else. But I won’t know until this is all over with."
We reached out to the Paducah Police Department and the city of Paducah. Their lawyer, Stacey Blankenship, sent me this statement:
"Mr. Redmon was given notice of the City Commission hearing and an opportunity to respond to the allegations made against him. His due process rights were not violated. The procedures set forth in the Police Officer’s Bill of Rights were followed and the City Commission retained separate counsel to advise it on those procedures. I am confident that the reviewing court in this case will affirm Mr. Redmon’s termination as being justified under the facts."
Since Redmon’s filed the petition, Judge Tim Kaltenbach will review the petition. Once he does, he could either grant another hearing or stand by the original decision.
Redmon’s attorney fees are paid completely by the Fraternal Order of Police.