DIETZMANN VS. CITY OF HOMER
Today, in Federal Court, the jury in the Dietzmann vs. City of Homer case issued a verdict of not guilty on all counts. The City of Homer is very pleased with this decisive verdict and is relieved that the trial is finally over. The City considers this verdict to be complete vindication for the Homer Police Department and for the officers involved in the case. The City is also relieved that finally, after seven years, the facts about what occurred that night are available to the public and are part of the public record. The City declined to comment on this case while in litigation in order to maintain the integrity of the judicial process and protect the rights of all involved. This often provided the public with a misleading and one- sided version of what occurred that night.
The City believed all along that the officers involved acted in a professional, reasonable, and responsible manner given the circumstances surrounding this incident. The City is gratified that the jury, after hearing all of the evidence, agreed with the City. The jury based its verdict upon facts and not emotion. What happened to young Jason and his family is tragic, to say the least. However, the facts and the evidence brought forward at trial make it clear that the responsibility for what occurred rests primarily with the father, Jason Anderson Sr., and not with the Homer Police Department. The Federal Marshalls, who planned this attempted arrest and were in charge at the scene, settled the claims against them several years ago.
The City would like to thank the Alaska Municipal League / Joint Insurance Association and attorney Frank Koziol for the outstanding work done representing the City, the Police Department, and the individual officers involved. The City would also like to congratulate the Homer Police Department on this verdict. The City is proud of the Police Department. The Department takes training and professionalism very seriously and it demonstrated that on the night this incident occurred. The Department’s commitment to public safety, community policing, and public service is on display every day.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: Contact Walt Wrede / City Manager