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FOX 2 News: Second police union defends STL officers accused of lying

ST. LOUIS – Two days after the St. Louis Circuit Attorney’s Office accused city police officers of lying about an attempted carjacking, a second union representing local police has come out in support of the officers.

In a statement, the Ethical Society of Police (ESOP) said city prosecutors presented a “one-sided view” of the incident and, in doing so, “reopened a healing wound between the circuit attorney’s office and the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department.

The incident reportedly happened March 19. Two St. Louis police officers said they encountered a man with a gun who tried to carjack them while they were in a police vehicle and in uniform.

That changed after news reports insinuated that Hall was resisting arrest. That he didn’t show his hands.

“I was really upset,” Hall said. “I was angry. To think that not only did I get assaulted, now my own agency is telling people that I resisted arrest.”

Asked about the department’s response, Hall said, “It definitely made it worse.”

More than a month after the attack, Hall and lawyer Lynette Petruska met with Internal Affairs investigators. Hall said those investigators had a folder with only a few pieces of paper inside. They didn’t know the names of his alleged attackers, even though Hall had provided names, given to him by allies within the department.

He said the department didn’t file a report on his injury, and there has never been a police report filed on the incident.

“To this day, there is no documentation within the police department of what happened,” Hall said.

Hall and Petruska believed an internal investigation would be fruitless. Both had higher hopes for a federal investigation.

The Post-Dispatch requested an interview with Chief John Hayden to discuss Hall’s case. A spokeswoman declined comment, referring a reporter Thursday to a prior statement in which Hayden said the department had put internal investigations on hold at the request of federal officials.