Daytona Beach police officer resigns after body camera turned off during arrest

Police say officer intentionally turned off camera during arrest

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Two former Daytona Beach police officers are out of a job after a controversial and violent arrest.

An internal affairs investigation revealed former officer Justin Ranum turned off his body camera during an incident under the Seabreeze Bridge.

In June of 2013, police say 37-year-old Christine Chippewa was approached by Ranum and former officer Matthew Booth in the parking lot of the bridge.

After the officers allege they saw Chippewa put a bag of cocaine in her mouth they took her down, but the body camera video doesn't show the take down and Daytona Beach Police Chief Mike Chitwood says that's a problem.

"Clearly in the middle of the arrest the camera goes blank and then I have a woman with her teeth knocked out of her mouth and headed to the hospital," said Chitwood. "And I have this documentation of 'Oh these things happened,' well why'd your camera go off?"

And according to Chitwood, Ranum turned it off himself.

Meanwhile, after being arrested, Chippewa filed a complaint with the Daytona Beach Police Department claiming that the officers used excessive force during the arrest.
She says Booth put his fingers down her throat, shoved a flashlight in her mouth and kicked her in the head.

"Further investigation into officer Booth and the injuries that this woman suffered are conducive to excessive force and that's not how we operate," said Chitwood.

Chitwood went on to say the actions that were displayed are against station police and that's why both officers are now off the job. Ranum reportedly resigned and Booth was reportedly fired.

Chippewa settled with the city of Daytona Beach for $20,000 and all of her charges were dropped.

About the Author:

Justin Warmoth joined News 6 in February 2013 as our Brevard County reporter. In March of 2016, after anchoring the weekend mornings since August of 2015, Justin was promoted to weekday morning anchor. You can catch him Monday through Friday mornings from 5-7 a.m. and at noon.