Phoenix P.D.'s Killer Cop Indicted for Murder -- and We Got Some Video of the Accused Officer Planting Crack Pipe on Woman

Categories: News
chrisman.jpg
Phoenix Police Officer Richard Chrisman
The Maricopa County Attorney's Office today announced that the officer involved in last week's shooting of an unarmed domestic violence suspect has been charged with murder.

If you're unfamiliar with the case click here. It's nuts.

The county attorney also provided some background on the accused officer, 37-year-old Richard Chrisman, including a little video of him planting a crack pipe on a woman in an unrelated incident.

It's pretty blatant. Check out the video after the jump.


County Attorney Rick Romley says the amount of evidence against Chrisman is what caused his office to up the charge from only aggravated assault to second-degree murder, aggravated assault, and cruelty to animals.

"There was a totality of evidence that came my way that led me to believe this is the appropriate charge," Romley said at a press conference this morning.

Chrisman is currently free on bond and Romely says he won't be re-arrested on the new charges -- something attorney Michael Manning, who represents the family of the victim, 29-year-old Danny Rodriguez, says he will ask Romley to reconsider.

Phoenix Police Chief Jack Harris supports Romley's decision and says there's a good chance Chrisman will be fired from the department before he even goes to trial. He says he will meet with Chrisman in the next few days to give him a chance to present his case as to why he should be allowed to keep his job.

We also found out today that this isn't the first time Chrisman's been in trouble with the department. He is on the Brady List (a list of cops known to have lied under oath) for planting a crack pipe on a woman during an arrest. Harris claims it was done basically just to mess with her.

The incident was caught on tape. Check it out below (that's Chrisman cavalierly swingin' his criminal beater -- despite there being no apparent reason for him to use it).


Phoenix Sergeant Tommy Thompson tells New Times the woman in the video was being arrested for an outstanding warrant. It was determined that Chrisman and the other officers planted the pipe to "get a response" from the woman, not to frame her for a crime.

Chief Harris says Chrisman was only suspended for one day.

Thompson says he's not sure whether such a short suspension for something like this is standard procedure in the department because, he says, he can't remember a time before when it's happened.

Either way, it's a disgusting abuse of power and Chrisman got off easy. That might be part of the reason he felt justified in shooting an unarmed man and his dog.

Chrisman's arraignment is scheduled for October 21.


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60 comments
richardvmacias25
richardvmacias25

chrisman has everything coming to him like I said berfoe, alot of them dont play fair, as for chrisman well just say that he is going to like his early retirement in the department of corrections all expense paid,

Weenie2
Weenie2

Without a doubt there are a lot of bad cops in phoenix, & I speak from experience. They believe they are above the law. Don't get me wrong I know there are good cop's out there also. But sad to say they are out numbered by the bad cop's. Then they wonder why they get no respect. Look at all the shoot out there are with police now, that's because you don't know which one your going to come up against. Also if you only knew how many of them are provoked by the actions of the phoenix police. If you notice as far as the last few years, it only gets worse, & it's always reported as the poor officer that almost lost his life, WTF about all the innocent citizen that have lost there lives or other crap over the actions of a phoenix police officer that thinks he can do anything, & get away with it. Phx PD have become flat ass pigs!!!!!!!!!!!!

westwindwalker
westwindwalker

yes. and they wonder why the police lose more and more respect from the public everyday? this is totally disgusting. why should the public believe they did not intend to charge her falsely after watching this video? what a sick bunch of people masquerading as law enforcement officers. give them officer of the year for taunting a mentally ill homeless woman. wow! really, its disturbing they only got a one day suspension.

whatspoppinlobster
whatspoppinlobster

if anyone of those cops from that video are still in uniform the people of pheonix should right right now!, dont riot on your community, riot on the police stations and the homes of these corrupt bastards

that is the most disgusting thing a cop can do, complete abuse of power and they should all be hung for treason against this nation

Mike South
Mike South

Wonder if he shot Rodriquez' dog to "get a reaction'...

Soltech
Soltech

I was beaten at and by the hands and feet and shin's well you get the idea of the Phoenix Police by 3 or 4 officers, when peacefully surrendering, watched first hand by another 10 or 15 officers, and no one said a word. I was left with both eye's blackend, two missing front teeth, and numberous bruises, scuffs, and related wounds, only to be listed as being cooperative in the eventual posted police documentation of the event, and charged with a crime of burglary for sleeping off an irresponsible drinking binge behind a local business, when I became disoriented in an unfamiliar area. Even with photographic proof and subsequent hospital follow-up, no cares what actually happened, and now I risk four years for a falsified tale of the Phoenix Police should I lose in trial with their oversized gang of thugs who lie and slander innocent citizens at will. I am hoping that somehow this gets out so more people will know the truth that is being whitewashed regarding the Phoenix Police Department!

White Power
White Power

Love that cop! I hope there's more just like that on the force!

andy1024
andy1024

just another case of wrong doing by police who think they can get away with anything.this cop should have been fired when he planted that crack pipe on that women but he wasn't and look what happen it gave him a chance to commit murder and not only should he be fired but the chief and asst chief should go to.there as much to blame as that killer cop.

clingon
clingon

What a bunch of whiney loose lipped libs. To bad the Cops don't know who you are so the next time you call the police for help they will let youlive your preferred life without law enforcement. You all totally ignore that Chrisman has been charged. Maybe next time a Chrisman type Cop will visit you..

A Lib's Worst Nightmare
A Lib's Worst Nightmare

Arpaio for President.

And I know that all of you liberal losers will be sad to hear, but when Joe Arpaio runs for office again, he'll win by a landslide. And that's because people that pay taxes (unlike you liberal losers) vote. Ha, ha....Arpaio and Brewer - together again. Ha, ha!

Mike Wells
Mike Wells

Actually NO, it's because people who live the majority of the year in retirement villas in places such as Minnesota are allowed to vote in Az as long as they spend 3 months out of the year in AZ. They sit home in their homes and watch all the CSI they can get and hear horror stories about life in the "Big City", and then see Joe hamming it up for the camera talking about how he is supposedly "tough on crime", and they fall for it. They drink the KoolAid, come down for the winter, vote, and go home, leaving us to deal with the mess.

Scrappy
Scrappy

who's pipe was it? was it his?

Gail
Gail

that is outrageous. All of the cops were in on it. How disgraceful.

JJ
JJ

How about we wait for the trail before convicting the cop of a crime. Until we have heard all of the evidence and a jury of his peers makes a call on his guilt he is innocent. There may be more to the story then what we have heard and there could be question on the other officer's motives we just don't know anything is possible. Sure he shouldn't have been playing a joke on a mentally ill woman but thats not enough to prove he murdered this kid whom wasn't a model citizen and by no means a hero as he has been made out to be. It was unfortunate that he died and if does turn out that the cop just snapped and killed him then he was an innocent victim but again doesn't deserve to be compared to people like MLK as he has been compared to by his pastor which I quite frankly found to be insulting. We will never really know what exactly happened only the people there do and who is to say that more then one person is bending the truth. All I'm saying is don't crucify the guy yet.

westwindwalker
westwindwalker

yeah. crucify him NOW! are you forgetting another officer saw him shoot the kid in the back of the head? so what if he wasnt MLK...he was a human being and this cop was not supposed to be judge, jury and executioner. as an ex-prosecutor i can tell you that much of his degeneraton into a back shooting murderer can be chalked up to police supervisors and the prosecutor looking the other way for his other aberrant conduct. he should have been clamped down on and nipped in the bud or thrown off the force long before he reached the back shooting stage. overhaul the whole damn force and the county prosecutor's office before the public rises up and starts random killing of the police. when that happens we all lose.

Freewilldavis
Freewilldavis

Ok JJ is a cop, and trying to bring another tone to cover up bad cops, I have seen this done many times.. The cop is guilty and if anyone else killed someone they would be in jail.. But he is a cop so he get to stay home... If I ever have a problem, I would not call a cop

JJ
JJ

See here people go again making assumptions. People being charged with murder are let out on bail all the time... I would know after working at a criminal defense law firm for years... in the United States we assume people to be innocent until proven guilty if you would rather the state assume all persons guilty first then you are truly misguided. What I am saying is we should wait until we know all the facts first and what we have heard in the media is not the whole story we aren't privy to all the evidence and the media is not either. Sometimes the truth when it comes out can be shocking and surprising and sometimes it turns out to be exactly what we all assumed to start with. If its turns out he is guilty then yes he should be held to a higher account because of the authority and trust given to him to protect the citizens of Phoenix. However we have no idea what will pan out in a trial its possible there is more then what appears on the surface we again just don't know yet. Its also shows complete ignorance to believe that if you ever had a issue that was getting out of hand that you wouldn't call the police. There are thousands of police calls a day and they go just fine its not like there is an army of bad cops out there out to kill you or frame you. That sort of paranoia helps nobody but criminals and just gets you into trouble in the end trying to be a vigilante.

Angrywhiteguy
Angrywhiteguy

My question is why the charge is only 2nd degree. Given his previous behaviour, I'd say there's an argument for this being pre-meditated, since he seems to have a history of proactively gone out to mess with people - this time he did it with his gun. Maybe it was 'roid-rage. Did anyone test him for substances? I say we need to execute a couple of these asshole thugs-with-a-badge to give them a taste of what they subject the rest of the populace to. Anyone who is not a cop gets a ton of charges dumped on them for any infraction, but in this state a cop can shoot a woman in the back as she drives her car away from him, with her 6-year-old in the car, and skate on the whole deal. The system in this case decided that her attempt to pass a phoney pain-killer prescription justified him killing her. How are we supposed to have respect for the law when the biggest crooks are lawyers, politicians, bankers and cops, and they never seem to be held accountable to the same level (if at all) as the rest of us? I have two words. France 1789.

Jcoghill2
Jcoghill2

It is not the job of the police in this country to "mess with people". When they do it is an abuse of power and a violation of Constitutional Rights. People like this cop give the police a bad name which only serves to make the job of conscientious officers that much harder. This guy is a bad apple, get rid of him before he spoils the whole barrel! Ultimately cops like this one run into someone on a call who isn't going to take the harassment and just kill them. This cop is also putting his fellow officers in danger by his actions. Too bad they didn't have the balls to say it to his face afterwards. I found the swinging of the monandock prosecutor an excessive display of force that could have caused a needless escalation of violence. Or was it that this cop felt threatened by an overweight little old lady?

Coz
Coz

These are only two of the things he's been caught doing, just imagine how many other things he's done that have gone un-noticed or have been sweep under the carpet.

Law Enforcement is totally out of control in Arizona

Extra Firm
Extra Firm

these cops are having a gay old time trouncing the law. Chrisman hopefully will be put in contact with his feminine side soon.

Beach356
Beach356

Did anyone didn't notice the reports on the three people killed in the rollover crash near Casa Grande? It may have been 'pit' maneuvered by a Pinal deputy. Check all the reports and it sure seems likely. The Border Patrol agents seem to be picking their words and whiteness reported the victims were being followed at a high rate of speed? Where was the deputy after the Border saw the car speed past him?

Bikhrse
Bikhrse

And while I'm at it:

This was not a lone 'rogue' cop. There are four of them on the street with the 'perp'. There was at least one other cop manning the video recorder. He or she saw exactly what happened. This recording was preserved. It made it into Chrisman's performance file (perhaps the other officers' as well), that means that someone from professional standards reviewed the video. Chrisman was on the Brady list, so someone -- an attorney most likely -- reviewed the video as well. Chrisman got a one day suspension. This was not an anamoly, this, ladies and gentlemen, is business as usual.

Concerned Citizen
Concerned Citizen

The public deserves to hear the truth. So many innocent lives have been destroyed by out of control law enforcement who Senator Russell Pearce says are in "handcuffs"... Oh really, Senator Pearce and Rep. Kavanagh??

Blairmonkman
Blairmonkman

I'm wondering why this police officer has a crack pipe in the first place. Either it was premeditated that he was going to plant it or he's done this sort of thing before and he was keeping it for a "just in case" scenario or he's a crack addict. Whichever it was, he should not be a police officer. These are not the people we want protecting us. These are the people we need to be protected from. I'm so truly glad he's sorry though. That makes it all better...........*blatant sarcasm*.

Bikhrse
Bikhrse

The location is downtown by the CASS shelter; Jefferson Street just east of 9th Ave to be precise. (Drive by sometime. You'll see the pink building that's in the background at the beginning of the clip on the north side of Jefferson after you pass 9th Ave.) The camera was located and manned on the top of the parking garage next to the county morgue.

This footage isn't an accident. They regularly filmed from there for the purpose of recording drug busts among the homeless population. Once edited, this clip would have made great State's evidence in a possession of dangerous drugs or possession of drug paraphernalia trial.

LawDog
LawDog

Has this guy had to surrender his weapon and badge? I think the family of his murder victim could be in danger since he's out of bail - I was trained that murder was not usually bailable. This smells like the usual cops covering cops.

friend
friend

If you are Black, Hispanic, or "Other" and live in Arizona, NEVER trust the police, NEVER talk to the police, NEVER befriend the police, NEVER turn your back on the police. The police will either frame you for a crime, beat you, murder you, or kill your family in front of you.

Weapons to use against Arizona police: video cameras, and witnesses. If the police are around, bring videos and capture what they do...that will detour their ability to commit crimes.

ALL police agencies in Arizona have credibility issues, ALL commit crimes daily against non-whites, ALL must be watched.

Charles Ward
Charles Ward

"Thompson says he's not sure whether such a short suspension for something like this is standard procedure in the department because, he says, he can't remember a time before when it's happened."

Boy, that's a good one, a real knee slapper! I think I almost choked on my drink.

Copssuck
Copssuck

This is why cops get no respect. The bad ruin it for the good and all 4 of these officers or should I say street thugs should never be allowed to work as police. Planting evidence is a crime and punishable by the law you supposedly uphold!

COPPERDOG
COPPERDOG

You have conduct like this, because some little wuss complained that the Academy was to hard, so they took the discipline out of the Academies and now you have all the little punk ass snobs becoming cops. They have a "kinder Gentler" academy, instead of one that uses discipline to weed out idiots like Chrisman.Departments are so stuck on using tasers, stun guns and pepper spray, that half of their Officers have forgotten how to tackle someone needing to be arrested for a crime even a misdemeanor and issue an ass whipping. (If NEEDED when a suspect resists)Half of the recruits in the academy have never been in a fight other than a debate in college. This is why they have survival day-(yawn) when they are supposed to fight and use arrest tactics to protect themselves. Half dont like to be hit and are afraid to hit their opponent eventhough they have head gear, a bullet proof vest and 20 OZ. boxing gloves on.

Tonyolguingrooves
Tonyolguingrooves

i am sicken by this video. I have an 11 year old daughter and try to teach her to respect authority. I am embaressed to be say i live in phoenix because of our police department. all these magets dressed in police uniforms should all be fired. i hope the asshole who killed the unarmed kid goes to prison for life and gets prison justice.WHOS LAUGHING NOW PRICK

Jim
Jim

It's very subtle, but you can clearly see that Chrisman isn't the only poorly mannered officer in the above video. If you watch around the 00:51 mark, the large officer blocks the way of someone riding his bike. Any person standing on a sidewalk wold be well mannered enough to kindly let someone pass instead of just planting his slightly obese form in the way. How you treat random strangers definitely defines a person's true characteristics. I'm curious how many other officers in Phoenix have thuggish tendencies as those two.

Bikhrse
Bikhrse

That camera was owned and operated by the PPD, not Copwatch. That video sat in the MCAO's Brady files for five years. It should have been disclosed to every person against whom Chrisman testified or wrote a departmental report. I wonder how many times that footage was reviewed in camera by a member of the county bench, who agreed that it needn't be disclosed.

Howzabout a little journalistic follow-up on just what exactly this "Brady List" is, why it's kept, and how it's used?

Mike Wells
Mike Wells

//"That camera was owned and operated by the PPD, not Copwatch."//

Howzabout a little internet follow-up on just how exactly you have this info. I agree this obviously isn't Copwatch, since it's obviously a building-mounted camera, a security cam of some kind, but I find the odds that they just happened to get tagged by a manned Phoenix Police Camera to be absolutely astronomical. Actually, the odds that they got this kind of footage at all are pretty slim, like I said earlier, whoever shot this should receive an award, it's the least fuzzy security cam footage I've ever seen, and they actually follow the action, rather than zoom in and then wander off for lunch.

MontanaBGreen
MontanaBGreen

In Seattle 6 cops have been whacked. The people who have declared war on cops will possibly get some more. When these former "hall monitors" finally start understanding all the letters in 'PROTECT AND SERVE" maybe this war will end. Cops jobs are to arrest and detain. Not to administer their brand of "street justice". The court system and detention facilities will do that.This ex-hall monitor in Phoenix needs to be put into the GENERAL POPULATION or what everdetention facility he may end in. Kudos the guy, or gal, that shot the footage of the woman being harassed by the PIGS. You know PRIDE INTEGRITY GUTS I forget what the "S" is.Maybe it SHOULD BE S.o.b,s.

Mistalee
Mistalee

Killer cops make cop killers. True 'nuff.

guest
guest

Do I understand this correctly, there is a list of officers who have lied underoath? And how is it any one of them keeps their job after doing so?

Coz
Coz

In Arizona it happens all the time, in fact, if you work for MCSO, you get promoted for lying.

Befuddled by Babeu
Befuddled by Babeu

During the above video, at least Chrisman didn't shoot the pigeon that walked by on the sidewalk during that incident.

Qz1az
Qz1az

I just saw the most disturbing news ever. Officer Richard Chrisman, Phoenix Police Department, and other officers had a video taken of them planting a crack pipe on a handcuffed, mentally disturbed woman - later claiming it was done as a joke. Now officer Chrisman is accused of second degree murder. Is he next going to say it was a joke to put a gun to this man’s head? What about those other cops in the video planting evidence on a handcuffed citizen, was there any disciplinary action done to these so called "protectors of society"? Why were they in possession of a crack pipe in the first place? This is our police force? It's a disgrace. What do you plan to do about all of them?

New bitch of the cell block
New bitch of the cell block

Officer Chrisman is an arrogant motherfucker, isn't he ? I used the "mofo" term as it is one Chrisman seems fond of.using himself. Planting evidence to coerce testimony... Tsk,tsk,tsk. Bad copper. And if the lady didn't give up the information he was seeking would that reduce her from "person of interest" to just another street nigger and a nice little ride to Arpaio's Auschwitz ? Officer Chrisman, it is seldom that I wish evil on any person. But for you, sir, I'm glad to take the time. You are human filth in the Arpaio style of police work this planet will be better served without. You're a small man in a fancy Ford sedan that even in the afterlife it will earn it;s keep as a taxi cab. You've never earned your keep, have you ? Confusion takes up too much of your time. You hide your lack of self esteem behind a badge number that was intended for greater men than yourself. Your vomit upon the image of the true law enforcement personnel that face each work day with trepidation but a commitment to the public and to the memory of those who've gone before them: To at least try to do their job with some sense of dignity and to distinguish themselves from the heritage of hatred and bigotry that comes as standard equipment for this city. Despite my life as drug addict and outlaw I will give any human their due respect for a job that I sure as hell wouldn't want to do. Brian, the cop who stops in for coffee at the Circle K in the A.M., is a man who spent a life time in service to his community without getting put on list for poor performance.Good bye, Officer Chrisman. You'll look just fine in orange, and I'm sure you will make some big, lonely Black dude a fine bitch.

MakeMostofLife
MakeMostofLife

You said it! There are so many corrupt police in Maricopa. They honestly feel they are above the law. I filed a serious police report against an officer who had threatened me and was in my home unlawfully. It's sad when you have to call 911 just to get the corrupt officers out of your home. Nevertheless, no follow-up as I requested, call back, nothing. I think they placed the guy on a different shift.

I decided I was not going to pay taxes to support corruption and harassment, and I moved.

Fortunately, there are some smarter people that work within the legal field such as attorneys and judges that, at times, can level out the playing field.

And, of course, Officers such as Mr. Vergillo are honorable people that should be praised and promoted. It's people like Officer Vergillo that prevent complete distrust and rebellion.

The reason Chrisman did what he did was because he truly believed he would get away with this serious crime (and he also forgot that Arpaio likes dogs). I think we have it reverse in this society: Officers need to be held at a much higher standard, and punishment more sever if found guilty. Obviously, this scum probably behaves this way on a daily bases and his mental stability should have been recognized by other professionals (such as psychologists working within the police department).

How many lives has this one person destroyed due to his unprofessional tactics and sick sense of humor?

Officer Chrisman is still a young man, and for karma to finally catch up with him... well, that's a bitch too.

dirty copper
dirty copper

Can't wait to see this guy over in Florence. Oh, wait, he'll have to spend the rest of his life in protective custody. They'll get him at some point though.

Gerry_C
Gerry_C

Without integrity, we don't have law enforcement we can count on.

Johnny White Man
Johnny White Man

Very appalling. With criminal acts like these by a rogue cop, is a pretext for further engagements in criminal behavior. The guy should not have been a cop after this incident. There needs to reform in the Dept. on how officers conduct themselves.

Marcy
Marcy

Don't worry, this is the only time cops have every planted evidence on someone and it will never occur in the future.

Cops never lie under oath and if they swear that's your crack pipe they found then it must be your crack pipe.

BTW, if you don't want to get shot stealing someone's beer/car/TV/wallet then I'd suggest not stealing. I particularly liked the reports of that neighbor on the far west side gunning down one of three burglary suspects, not only did he eliminate one piece of trash but the other two losers get 1st degree murder charges instead of burglary charges. Probably not what they were expecting as they went about breaking into people's homes and helping themselves to other people's belongings.

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