Three Phoenix police officers have resigned after a man alleged they forced him to eat marijuana found in his vehicle to avoid going to jail, Chief Joseph Yahner said Thursday. A fourth officer, Jeff Farrior, was demoted from lieutenant to sergeant for being aware of last week's incident and not taking appropriate action, Yahner told reporters. "Their actions are appalling and unacceptable. This conduct is against everything that we stand for," Yahner said. Police identified the three officers who quit as Richard G. Pina, Jason E. McFadden, and Michael J. Carnicle, the AP reports. Two of them are being investigated both criminally and by the department, Yahner said.
Yahner said all of the officers' video cameras were turned off and didn't record the incident in which a 19-year-old Phoenix man was stopped for a traffic violation around 3:30am on Sept. 13. The man was issued a citation and had his car towed. He later told a patrol supervisor that the officers demanded he eat a small amount of marijuana, estimated at around a gram, or be taken to jail. Yahner called the allegations about the officers' actions "disturbing and upsetting." The three officers who quit were all in their first year with Phoenix police, according to Yahner. "I was going to fire them. They chose to resign," he said.