Statement Regarding July 3 Video on Social Media from Aspen Hill

Yesterday, July 4th, the Montgomery County Department of Police were made aware of a video that was posted on Twitter during the evening of July 3.  The video showed a Montgomery County Police officer using force while making an arrest at a shopping center in Aspen Hill.

The preliminary investigation has determined that on July 3, 2019,  officers from the 4th District were conducting an undercover operation regarding a suspect selling psilocybin mushrooms in the Aspen Hill area.  During this investigation, officers identified the suspect as 19-year-old Arnaldo Pesoa of Silver Spring.  Plainclothes officers located Pesoa inside a restaurant in the Aspen Hill Shopping Center located at 13701 Connecticut Avenue and attempted to place him under arrest for the attempted distribution of a controlled dangerous substance.  Pesoa became disorderly with the officers inside the restaurant and resisted the arrest.  Officers eventually removed Pesoa from the restaurant.  While outside the restaurant, Pesoa continued to act in a disorderly manner and resist arrest.

Pesoa was transported to the Central Processing Unit where he was charged with one count of possession of a controlled dangerous substance, one count of attempt distribution of a controlled dangerous substance, one count of resisting arrest, and one count of second-degree assault.  Pesoa was released after posting a $5,000 bond.

The Montgomery County Department of Police takes all complaints or evidence of excessive force seriously.

As a result of the Department’s preliminary investigation into this arrest, the officer involved has been identified as Police Officer III Kevin Moris of the 4th District Special Assignment Team.  Officer Moris’ police powers have been suspended and he has been assigned to administrative duties pending the investigation. Furthermore, the officer’s use of force during this incident will be investigated by MCP’s Criminal Investigations Division and upon completion, the findings will be referred to the Montgomery County State’s Attorneys Office for review.

The Department’s internal investigation into this incident is ongoing.  Any witnesses or persons who may have more information regarding this incident are encouraged to call the Internal Affairs Division at 240-773-6000.

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