4th officer on leave in United incident as officers' names, histories revealed

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- The Chicago Department of Aviation quietly placed on administrative leave a police sergeant connected to the United Airlines incident where an Elizabethtown doctor was dragged off of flight for refusing to give up his seat to united employees, bringing the total number of officers on leave to four.

A memo obtained by the WHAS11 News i-Team, which was dated April 19, to Sgt. John T. Moore advised him of his change in status ten days following the incident which gained national and worldwide attention.

Moore's name, along with the names of three other officers were revealed in a trove of documents obtained by the WHAS11 News i-Team under the Freedom of Information Act Monday.

Incident reports said Officer Maurico Rodriguez was the first officer to respond to the plane at Chicago O'hare Gate C3. He was followed by Officers John Long and Steve Smith, the documents show.

According to the records, Long is the officer who dragged Dao from the flight. The officers said in the reports they repeatedly asked Dao to leave the plane after airline officials said he and his wife had been selected by a computer to give up their seats when no one volunteered to leave.

During the physical confrontation, the officers in multiple reports suggested Dao's injuries may have been caused by the doctor himself.

"Long was able to grab hold of the subject and pull him from the seat towards the aisle," Rodriguez wrote, "The subject then started flailing his arms and started to fight with Ofc. Long. Due to this incident, the subject was able to knock Ofc. Long's right hand off the subject's arm causing Ofc. Long to lose control of Mr. Dao," he continued.

"Consequentially, the subject fell and hit his mouth on the armrest across from him which caused an injury to his mouth," Rodriguez said.

According to personnel records also released, Officer Long had just returned from a 5-day suspension 8 days prior to the United incident. The records show he was disciplined for violating city policy when he did not obey an order to park his vehicle in a position to block outside vehicles from gaining access to airport property in January 2017.

Sgt. Moore's work history includes multiple suspensions for not showing up to work and not informing his supervisors.

Records for the other two officers did not include any suspensions.

A spokesperson representing the attorneys for Dr. Dao did not immediately respond to request for comment.

This story will be updated.

© 2017 WHAS-TV


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