Warren police officer fired after hitting, slamming inmate on ground during booking

An officer seen on video assaulting an inmate during his booking was fired from the Warren Police Department on Monday.

Video showed Officer Matthew Rodriguez, 48, hit a carjacking suspect, who sources identified as Jaquwan Smith, knocking him to the ground after his June 13 arrest. Rodriguez then slammed Smith's head on the ground and hit him again.

"Like everybody, I was shocked and appalled when I observed Rodriguez’s actions. These actions were completely unjustified and unprofessional, ultimately resulting in criminal charges against him," Warren Police Commissioner Bill Dwyer said.

Rodriquez was charged with assault and battery last week and placed on paid leave while an investigation was conducted.

"This incident no doubt reflected negatively on every member of this Department. A comprehensive internal investigation showed that Rodriguez violated multiple Department policies and procedures," Dwyer said. "Given the totality of this incident, the decision to terminate Rodriguez’s employment was clear and obvious."

Rodriquez was with the department for 14 years. 

Editor's note: A previous version of this story misstated the date of the assault. The story has been updated with the correct date.