Brookings police officer has state certification suspended for excessive use of force

A Brookings police officer’s certification has been suspended for excessive use of force during the arrest of a suspect.

The South Dakota Law Enforcement Officers Standards and Training Commission met in Sioux Falls Wednesday. They held a hearing with witness testimony and cross-examination regarding the actions of Brookings Police Officer Damien Weets.

Body cam and fixed camera video were also entered as evidence.

In a 10-0 vote, the commission found that Officer Weets engaged in conduct unbecoming an officer. This follows the April arrest of a suspect for intoxication. That man’s lawyer says Weets threw his client down on a bench hard enough that he hit his head and was knocked unconscious. The lawyer says Weets later lied about that to medical personnel.

The man settled a civil lawsuit against Weets this fall for an undisclosed amount.

Weets will have a year’s suspension of his law enforcement certification and must also comply with a psychological evaluation. Additional training will need to be completed in conflict resolution, use of force, and courtroom testimony.

There is no guarantee that Weets’ state certification will be reinstated.


October 26, 2023