CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) -
Cleveland Police Officer David Mindek was found not guilty Wednesday, for the fatal shooting of Daniel Ficker.
A 911 call from a woman who’s boyfriend, Daniel Ficker had just been shot and killed by Cleveland Police Officer Matthew Craska, “My boyfriend just got shot by a Cleveland cop.”
But the trial is not about charges against Craska, rather Cleveland Officer David Mindek, who was off-duty and asked Craska to look into jewelry stolen from his wife at a party.
“He said that her cousin decided to bring her on again off again piece of s*** pill poppin’ boyfriend. He’s a convicted felon, he’s always stealing from the family,” Craska said in court.
Ficker was an instant suspect. When the two officers got to his home in Parma, a fight broke out between Ficker and Craska. Eventually, Craska drew his weapon and fired at close range as they wrestled on the ground.
The gist of the case is that Mindek brought Craska along to be his muscle.
This is the interesting part of the case, Mindek faces dereliction of duty charges because he didn’t help break up the fight. The reasoning is that if he had, the shooting may not have been necessary.
Prosecutors say Mindek’s lack of action supports the dereliction of duty claim.
Prosecutor: “Was it a life or death struggle?”
Craska answered, “Yes.”
Prosecutor: “Did you have to call out to Dave Mindek for assistance?”
Mindek’s lawyers showed pictures of scrapes and bruises and blood on his shirt that they say he got in battle with Ficker. And also a video from right after the shooting that shows he hadn’t disappeared and was scouring the scene for evidence.
But the question Judge Robert McClelland will have to decide is where was he during the battle.
The Judge refused to throw out the charges from the case.
Article Courtesy of WOIO 19 Action News