Ex-Philadelphia officer to be reinstated after winning arbitration case

6abc Digital Staff Image
Friday, April 26, 2024
Ex-officer to be reinstated after winning arbitration case
Ex-Philadelphia officer to be reinstated after winning arbitration case

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- A former Philadelphia police officer who was originally charged with first-degree murder in 2017 while on duty and then had the charges dropped will get his job back.

An arbitrator made the decision about Ryan Pownall's future on Thursday.

Pownall was charged with shooting David Jones, who was pulled over while riding a dirt bike.

Police said Pownall was transporting a victim to the special victims unit when he saw Jones riding a dirtbike on a city street. Jones' bike had stalled and he pulled into the parking lot of a night club. Pownall also pulled into the lot, and when he frisked Jones, he said he felt a gun.

Police officials have said that Pownall tried to shoot Jones during the struggle, but that his gun jammed. Jones threw his gun down and fled, and Pownall fired at him, shooting him in the back and killing him. The grand jury that recommended charges said Jones was "no danger to anyone in his flight."

In 2022, a judge threw out the case, saying the DA's office mishandled instructions to the jury.

On Thursday, an arbitrator also ruled Pownall must get back pay.

The FOP says Pownall now looks forward to getting back on the job.

The City of Philadelphia is reviewing the arbitrator's decision.

In 2018, the city agreed to pay Jones' family $1 million in a settlement agreement.

Statement from Philadelphia Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5 President Roosevelt Poplar:

"As part of Ryan Pownall's due process rights, his case was presented to a neutral arbitrator where the City of Philadelphia and the Fraternal Order of Police presented their respective cases. The arbitrator ruled in favor of Pownall's re-instatement to the Philadelphia police department. Pownall will also be entitled to full, back-pay and seniority under the ruling.

The FOP Lodge #5 and fellow officers stood in solidarity with Pownall and his family throughout this entire ordeal. We're happy to see Pownall re-instated to his job and he looks forward to protecting this great city."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.