POLICE

Salt Lake City Police release videos of airport officer assaults

Mar 22, 2022, 2:14 PM

SALT LAKE CITY — The Salt Lake City Police Department released videos of two different airport division officer assaults on Tuesday. Both assaults happened this year at the Salt Lake City International Airport, the first in February and then another in March.

“These incidents show a total disregard for basic dignity and respect. This conduct can put our officers, airline passengers, and airport employees at risk, and I hope these types of assaults end now,” said Salt Lake City Police Chief Mike Brown.

“I’d like to recognize and thank our partners at TSA and Salt Lake City International Airport who responded quickly, maintained awareness of the airport during this incident, and directed other officers to the scene. Their partnership is vital to maintaining the welcoming, safe and efficient airport we have,” Brown added.

February incident

The first assault happened on Feb. 17, 2022, when police said a 28-year-old man rushed past TSA officers at the airport security checkpoint. Police say the man had no business at the airport and was not a ticketed passenger.

An officer with Salt Lake City Police saw the situation and intervened to stop the man. He resisted and punched and kicked the officer repeatedly.

An airline passenger reportedly saw the struggle and intervened to help the SLCPD officer. The passenger was later identified as a retired member of law enforcement

The SLCPD said it forwarded the case to the FBI and U.S. Attorney’s Office for federal prosecution.

Here is the video released by SLCPD:

 

According to SLCPD, the footage begins after the man bypassed the TSA’s Travel Document Checking Podium at the entrance to the security checkpoint. The department said that portion of the video was not disclosed due to security and investigative purposes. 

The department also emphasized that the situation was not an airport security breach because the man did not get outside the screening area and there was no impact on airport operations.

March incident

The second assault was on March 12, when a 33-year-old man approached two SLCPD officers who were on the lower level of the airport.

As seen in the video at the top of the page, the man dropped his bag and punched one of the officers in the head. The man then appeared to try to punch the second officer but then immediately surrendered and put his hands up.

The officers took the man into custody and transported him to Salk Lake County Metro Jail on allegations of assaulting a police officer. SLCPD said it referred the case to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for federal prosecution. 

The man’s ticketing status is unknown pending an ongoing investigation.  Footage from one officer’s body-worn camera is at the top of this article.

“We’d like to extend our sincere thanks to the men and women who work day in and day out to ensure the safety of our airport passengers and employees,” said Bill Wyatt, executive director for Salt Lake City Department of Airports. “We are grateful for their dedication in serving the traveling public.”

Police said that the Salt Lake City International Aiport “remains a safe and efficient airport” despite the two assaults. 

“TSA is grateful to our airport law enforcement partners who play an important role in operations at SLC,” said TSA Federal Security Director for Utah, Matt Davis. “TSA takes a zero-tolerance approach to threats, verbal abuse, and physical violence of any kind against our employees. We have the same expectation for the SLCPD officers who work alongside us every day.”

The officers involved were not seriously injured and remained on the job after the situation.

Related: 

Today’s Top Stories

Police

Salt Lake County DA's office pictured, it just declined to call an incident an officer-involved cri...
Samantha Herrera

Salt Lake County DA says police chase that ended in a fatal crash was not an officer-involved critical incident

The DA's office found that a police chase turned crash did not meet the criteria for an officer-involved critical incident.
17 hours ago
(Getty Images)...
Mark Jones

21-year-old man sentenced for multiple sex crimes

A 21-year-old man was sentenced Wednesday for four sex crimes he pled guilty to in August.
2 days ago
Orem police at scene of swat standoff...
Samantha Herrera

Man in custody after hours of negotiation in Orem home

A possible Orem City SWAT situation has police officers on scene in a neighborhood around 700 E, 400 S. Police have not provided any information yet.
2 days ago
Police in Elko, Nev., are seeking the public's assistance in locating a suspect in connection to fi...
Mark Jones

Nevada police searching for suspect who fired into at least three buildings

Police in Elko, Nevada, say someone shot a firearm into at least three different businesses on Monday night. Police say there were no injuries reported.
4 days ago
An officer is in stable condition after a shooting that left one dead on Sept. 27, 2022. (Adam Smal...
Amie Schaeffer

Officer-involved shooting kills one, sends officer to hospital

A South Salt Lake Police officer is in the hospital after a shots were exchanged overnight. One person kiled.
4 days ago
Salt Lake City Police responded to five different incidents involving weapons on Monday, Sept. 26, ...
Mark Jones

Salt Lake City Police respond to five different incidents with weapons

Salt Lake City Police responded to five different incidents Monday involving a weapon.
5 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Young woman receiving laser treatment...
Form Derm Spa

How facial plastic surgery and skincare are joining forces

Facial plastic surgery is not only about looking good but about feeling good too. The medical team at Form Spa are trained to help you reach your aesthetic outcomes through surgery and through skincare and dermatology, too.
large group of friends tohether in a park having fun...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

What differentiates BYU’s MBA program from other MBA programs

Commitment to service is at the heart of BYU’s MBA program, which makes it stand out among other MBA programs across the country.
a worker with a drill in an orange helmet installs a door in the house...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

Home improvement tip: Increase the value of your home by weatherproofing doors

Make sure your home is comfortable before the winter! Seasonal maintenance keeps your home up to date. Read our tips on weatherproofing doors.
Curb Appeal...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

How to have the best of both worlds for your house | Home security and curb appeal

Protect your home and improve its curb appeal with the latest security solutions like beautiful garage doors and increased security systems.
A paper reading IRS, internal revenue service is pictured...
Jordan Wilcox

The best strategies for dealing with IRS tax harassment | You have options!

Learn how to deal with IRS tax harassment. This guide will teach you how to stop IRS phone calls and letters, and how to handle an IRS audit.
spend a day at Bear Lake...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

You’ll love spending the day at Bear Lake | How to spend a day at Bear Lake

Bear Lake is a place that needs to be experienced. Spend a day at Bear Lake.
Salt Lake City Police release videos of airport officer assaults