Brentwood Police Officers Association responds to media on 2020 K9 dismemberment trial of robbery suspect
Claim news reports ‘demonizing the police and fanning the flames of racial discord’
City-States “the use of force committee…concluded that the use of force was within policy and law in the circumstances”
By Allen D. Payton
The Brentwood Police Officers’ Association issued the following press release on February 24, 2022, in response to media reports of newly released police body camera footage of a February 10, 2020 incident with a robbery suspect involving a police dog attacking her, and the lawsuit she filed. (See unedited police body camera video. Warning: graphic images)
Local Bay Area media, KRON and KTVU, began reporting on a civil lawsuit filed against one of our members, Officer Ryan Rezentes. National media also began reporting on the story. As has become commonplace in recent years, these outlets abdicated their responsibility to inform the public of the facts of an incident and instead chose to demonize the police and fan the flames of racial discord. Contrary to media reports, it wasn’t just “shoplifting” and the use of a police K9 had nothing to do with the race of the suspects. .
The lawsuit stems from a crime that was committed on February 10, 2020. The complainant, Talmika Bates, who was 24 at the time, and two of her associates allegedly stole more than $10,000 worth of merchandise from a store, then fled in a vehicle. While another Brentwood PD officer was responding to the reported crime, he observed the suspect vehicle at a nearby major intersection and it appeared that the vehicle was attempting to drive through the busy intersection against a red light. This officer placed his police car in front of the suspect vehicle in order to protect other motorists and prevent any further theft. Instead of stopping, the suspect vehicle slammed into the front of the police cruiser to escape, then drove away at high speed. The actions of the suspects not only endangered the police officer who was hit, but also endangered many other citizens on the roadway.
Bates and his associates continued to flee in their vehicle until they collided with a curb and disabled their vehicle, at which time all of the suspects, including Bates, fled the vehicle on foot. Numerous officers, including Constable Rezentes with K9 Marco, as well as a police helicopter, responded to the scene to assist in the search for the suspects. One of the areas excavated was a field with wide expanses of nearly impenetrable shrubs and trees. These types of areas are particularly dangerous for police to search, as potentially armed suspects can easily hide inside overgrown vegetation, and police may not see the suspect until they are on top of them. This is one of many scenarios where the use of a police dog helps keep our officers safe.
After nearly an hour of searching, during which not even the helicopter could find the suspects, Officer Rezentes ordered the K9 Marco to search the large patch of overgrown vegetation and the dog located Bates at inside. Police dogs are trained to bite the first part of a suspect’s body they come into contact with, which in Bates’ case was the top of his head. When it became apparent that K9 Marco had located one of the suspects hiding in the vegetation, Officer Rezentes and the other officers ordered Bates out. This is standard security practice, as officers were still unable to see Bates and they could not determine if she was armed. Once Bates was taken into custody, she immediately received medical attention for her injuries.
The Brentwood Police Officers Association believes it is important for the public to have this context regarding Constable Rezentes’ actions and use of K9 Marco. All the details we provided here, and many more, were available in the public records. It appears that these outlets have chosen not to seek this information, and they are trying to defend their actions by stating that they have sought comment from the City of Brentwood and the Brentwood Police Department, knowing full well that none of these entities will only provide feedback on an incident that has ongoing litigation. The media are familiar with public records requests and know that they could have obtained court records from Bates’ criminal case. Since these specific outlets did not, we can only conclude that it was because they had no desire to provide the context we have provided here, and instead would have attempted to sow the division between the police and the community.
The Brentwood Police Officers Association will not comment further on the details of this incident. We are grateful for the support of our community, as our officers do their best to keep everyone safe.
Brentwood PD Incident press release
On February 10, 2020 at 11:45 a.m. officers were dispatched to Ulta Beauty Supply (in the Streets of Brentwood shopping center) to investigate a theft. Usher of Keilaysha (24-year-old female, Oakland) Talmika Bates (24-year-old female, Hayward) and ramia amstrong (22-year-old woman, Richmond) left the store with approximately $10,000 worth of merchandise and drove away in a Nissan Murano heading for Lone Tree Way.
A Brentwood police officer located the vehicle at the intersection of Shady Willow Lane and Lone Tree Way and attempted a traffic check. The driver of the Nissan collided with the patrol car and fled. The vehicle was found in a field at the north end of Slatten Ranch Road where the occupants fled on foot into a nearby neighborhood. A perimeter was set up by police units in Brentwood, Antioch and Oakley until the three women were located and taken into custody.
An additional subject, Adrian Benton Jr. (21 year old male, Richmond) appeared in the area to pick up the females and help them flee the area. He was also taken into custody without incident.
The four subjects are reserved for the Martinez detention center.
This case is currently under investigation. Anyone with additional information is encouraged to call the Brentwood PD dispatcher at 925-809-7911.
Questions for Brentwood PD
The following questions were sent to the Brentwood PD on Tuesday morning March 1.
“Are police dogs trained to attack and bite any part of a suspect’s body, including his head, face, and torso, or just his arms and legs to stop him from running and/or or resist arrest?
At what point is a K9 officer supposed to call off and stop the dog from further attacking a suspect, if he no longer runs and sits, as Ms Bates shows in the video, as the dog continues to attack him?
Why didn’t the officer taze Mrs. Bates to obey and get out of the bushes, and restrain the dog once she wasn’t running and sitting? »
Statement from Brentwood in response to media inquiries regarding the Bates trial
In response, the following statement was provided by Deputy City Manager Darin Gale.
“Due to ongoing civil litigation, the City of Brentwood, including the Brentwood Police Department, will not comment on specific details and personnel questions requested by the media regarding this incident.
We can say that this incident was reviewed by the Brentwood Police Department’s Use of Force Committee, which concluded that the use of force was within policy and law in the circumstances that involved a prosecution. at high speed and a collision with a Brentwood police vehicle.
A request under the Public Records Act was made for “anew York and all documents, videos, etc. regarding the February 10, 2020 police incident, including the K9 unit with suspect Talmika Bates and the other suspects mentioned in the press release, including the response to her trial.
Please check back later for their responses and any further updates.