Prosecutors have set a trial date in the case of a Columbia police officer accused of using excessive force against a South Carolina football player.
The attorney for officer David Beddingfield said the trial is tentatively scheduled for Aug. 2 at the Richland County courthouse. First Circuit assistant solicitor Don Sorenson is handling the case because local prosecutors believed it presented a conflict of interest.
It has been nearly two years since a grand jury indicted Beddingfield and fellow officer Roger Gilland for misconduct in office after offensive lineman Kevin Young said he was punched in the face repeatedly while being subdued following a fight in Five Points.
The charge against Gilland was dropped, while Beddingfield has been suspended from the force without pay since August 2008.
“Let’s get him his day in court,” Columbia attorney Mark Whitlark said Tuesday. “He needs his day in court.”
Attempts to reach Sorenson were unsuccessful.
Beddingfield, who also is charged with simple assault, faces a year in prison and $1,000 fine if convicted on the misconduct charge.
Young, a native of Clearwater, Fla., who is no longer on USC’s team, also has brought a civil suit against the city, Beddingfield and Gilland. The suit, which seeks unspecified damages, claims Young has suffered mental anguish, humiliation and emotional distress, in addition to a bloody nose.
Whitlark has said officers were doing their job when they arrested Young. Police later dropped fighting and resisting arrest charge against Young.