A Denver police officer charged with beating a teenager during an arrest this year pleaded not guilty Tuesday in Denver District Court.
Charles Porter, 41, is charged with felony first-degree assaulting causing serious bodily injury to 16-year-old Juan Vasquez in the April 18 incident.
Vasquez was hanging out with two friends at a home near West 37th Avenue and Pecos Street. Porter and other officers, who were patrolling the neighborhood, thought Vasquez was drinking alcohol, according to news reports at the time. As Porter and the other officers approached the group, Vasquez ran from them, jumping over some neighborhood fences.
The officers eventually caught up to Vasquez in an alley, where they allegedly kicked and beat the teen. Porter, a 12-year veteran, then allegedly joined in, grabbed onto a fence with both hands and proceeded to jump up and down on Vasquez.
Porter has denied using excessive force. He is suspended without pay pending the resolution of the case.
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