Original police report claims victim hit patrol car with his skateboard, dash-cam footage proves otherwise.
A Carlisle police trooper previously charged earlier this year with assault is facing increased scrutiny after dash-cam footage was released Monday showing him kicking a defenseless skateboarder in the face while he sat on the sidewalk already in handcuffs.
Officer Ryan Luckenbaugh was charged in February with excessive force in his arrest of Chris Siennick, which is an admittedly tame way of describing the events that took place in May of 2015 along Harrisburg’s Restaurant Row, evidence now publicly available via the footage.
The affidavit states that Siennick was handcuffed with his hands behind his back and sitting on the corner of Second and Locusts Streets when Luckenbaugh kicked him in the face, which caused “his head and body to recoil backwards.”
In the dash-cam, Siennick is heard arguing and cursing at the officers, and allegedly spits at the officers from the ground where is already handcuffed and detained. At this point, Luckenbaugh kicks him in the face as his partner Michael Trotta is heard saying “No no no no no.” Trotta was fired by the Pennsylvania State Troopers last year for undisclosed reasons.
Luckenbaugh can then be heard saying to Siennick, “Spit on that.”
While the actual impact occurred below the camera and is not fully captured on video, responding Harrisburg police officers witnessed the kick. To their credit, when interviewed by state police investigators about it, they did not protect Luckenbaugh, saying “the kick was neither reasonable nor justified given the circumstances.”
“Somebody that’s gonna abuse the power that we give them to protect us, they don’t deserve it,” Siennick said.
On the police report, Luckenbaugh lied and said that Siennick hit the patrol car with his skateboard, which there is no evidence of having occurred.
The trooper is now facing four charges, including assault and harassment. He is due to appear in court on June 17. Siennick is also pursuing a federal civil lawsuit for the physical and psychological injuries suffered.
Watch the complete video of the police stop below: