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Community rallies to help suspended York County police officer

GOFUNDME FOR OFFICER.JPG

Just days after a York County police officer was charged with shooting a man while on duty, a community is coming together to show support.

Friends and family have started a GoFundMe page to support Southwestern Regional Police Officer Stuart Harrison.

“It’s a bad situation for a good guy,” said Dennis Ilyes, owner of Twin Pond Farm.

Some people in the Spring Grove community are in shock, days after charges were filed against Officer Harrison.

“He’s just one of those people you bonded too real quick,” said friend Robert Brunner.

Brunner has known Officer Harrison for over a decade. Both men served in the Marine Corps and have shared conversation about their time and Brunner’s bar business.

“He carried himself in a very professional way. He’d like to have fun. He like to joke,” Brunner said.

Brunner is among many in the Spring Grove area disappointed by the charges against Harrison.

“It’s a shame,” he said.

Officer Harrison is facing one count of simple assault for the May shooting of a handcuffed suspect in Spring Grove.

Court documents show that Harrison and another officer wrestled with a suspect for a while inside the Santander Bank, even tasing him several times. As Harrison got the suspect to the car, another struggle ensued.

Instead of taking out his taser, Harrison accidentally drew his gun, shooting the suspect in the leg.

“It’s a mistake but unfortunately when you are in his shoes, it’s a big mistake,” said Ilyes.

A mistake that has landed the officer on unpaid administrative leave with his career hanging in the balance.

Now, friends are stepping forward in his defense, starting a GoFundMe page to help support the police officer with finances, helping someone that they say was always willing to help others in need.

“I would take 100 of him in a heartbeat. His professionalism, his work ethic, his discipline and is respect for this country,” Brunner said.

We reached out to the District Attorney’s Office about the charges but they declined comment. As for Harrison, he is on unpaid leave from Southwestern Regional awaiting his preliminary hearing. His GoFundMe has raised about $3,000 with a goal of $20,000.

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