SAN ANTONIO — A San Antonio Police officer who was indefinitely suspended earlier this year after allegations he engaged in an "unnecessary verbal exchange" – including racial slurs – with an African American suspect he was taking into custody will now be re-instated Thursday, following a two-day hearing that included the presence of an arbitrator.
The reduction from an indefinite suspension to a 10-month one, with no back pay included, comes after "the arbitrator found there was just cause for a lesser suspension" during the hearing for Tim Garcia, Garcia's attorney said.
The investigation, stemming from a July, 2018 incident, also included allegations that Garcia used an "unnecessary" amount of force with his baton on the suspect, breaching SAPD policy.
The allegations were eventually verified in the investigation via lapel footage.
SAPD Chief William McManus on Jan. 7 submitted a letter stating Garcia was suspended indefinitely and without pay as a result of the investigation.
After the latest developments this week, McManus said he stands by his decision made in January.
"This kind of behavior erodes the trust and legitimacy that the community places in the San Antonio Police Department," he said. "With respect to the arbitrator's decision, Garcia will be reinstated after completing the return-to-duty process."
Garcia's attorney, meanwhile, says he "has been remorseful" since the beginning and "respects the decision of the arbitrator."