Duluth Officer Use of Force Case Could Go to Supreme Court

City Attorney Gunnar Johnson petitioning the Adam Huot case to the Minnesota Supreme Court

DULUTH, Minn.- The City of Duluth’s top attorney is not backing down in his fight to keep a police officer from getting his job back.

The saga continues, as the City wishes to take the case to the final nail: the Minnesota State Supreme Court.

In 2017 officer Adam Huot was shown on body cam video dragging a man by the handcuffs through the skywalk before that man’s head slammed on a doorway.

Officer Huot was terminated following the incident two years ago. In 2018 an arbitrator ruled that the city didn’t have just cause to fire him. The city took that to the Court of Appeals, which affirmed the arbitrator’s decision.

Huot was caught on body cam dragging a man through the skywalk who was not obeying orders, before the man’s head hit the doorway.

City Attorney Gunnar Johnson is standing by the city’s decision to keep him off the force, because they said Huot did not report the use of force, and that force was unreasonable.

Johnson released a statement to FOX21 which reads in part:

“Strong relationships of mutual trust between the police and the community are critical to maintaining public safety. The City shouldn’t have to re–instate an officer that has violated the public trust twice and has a demonstrated proclivity to do so again.”

Meanwhile Duluth Police Union President Sgt. Ryan Morris has said the Department does not condone Huot’s behavior.

But he says the incident is not reflective of the officer, that served his punishment with unpaid leave, and it’s time to stop using taxpayer money to keep pushing the case.

“Adam loves his job and I think his passion would be to do this job again, to come back to work for us,” Morris said. “This is obviously not a good battle to fight, it’s been ruled, it’s been ruled against them time after time after time.”

Morris added that the situation should have never gone past the arbitrator in the first place, as the officers’ contract states that binding arbitration is the final decision.

Huot has not been allowed back to the Department since his termination and has not been paid for a year and a half.

Just because the City is petitioning the Supreme Court, there is no guarantee that they will actually hear the case.

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