Late Monday, Officer James Burt, a 10 year veteran of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, was arrested for domestic battery and kidnapping. According to the arrest report, he attempted to strangle his girlfriend during the assault, breaking her jaw in the process.
Via the Las Vegas Review Journal:
Burt and his girlfriend of about four months were arguing as she was leaving their house, the arrest report said. After throwing her against the garage door, Burt then “began dragging (her) back into the house,” then threw her on the couch, got on top of her and covered her mouth, the report said, possibly breaking her jaw.
The report said Burt then grabbed her by the neck and lifted her off the ground “several times.” An hour later, when he let her leave, she made her way to Southern Highlands Hospital because of her jaw. Burt was later arrested at a friend’s house.
Not at all surprisingly, since domestic violence doesn’t tend to be a one-time event and police tend to be 2 to 4 times as likely to be abusive toward their wives and children, this isn’t Ofc. Burt’s first arrest for beating a woman. Four years earlier, he was arrested for beating his then wife in an incident that is pretty close to identical to the most recent case.
Via the same LVRJ article:
The 2011 charges were filed after an in-home argument, according to the arrest report. Burt’s wife was on the couch when Burt pushed and hit her, then held down her face and jaw before punching her in the stomach, the report said.
Burt then grabbed his wife of less than two years and “escorted her to their truck.”
“(His wife) stated at this point she was afraid of James and fearful of what he might do to her if she did not cooperate with him,” the report said. Burt was arrested after police managed to pull his truck over.
At that time he faced charges of two counts of domestic battery, coercion with force and kidnapping. However equally unsurprisingly, given the LVMPD’s track record of holding it’s own accountable, quickly disappeared. After a slap on the wrist involving a temporary (one month) firing and community service, Burt was back out there protecting the citizens of Las Vegas from violent people.
Metro’s spokesperson, Officer Jesse Roybal, was quick to point out that, while Officer Burt has been suspended without pay based on the charges being a felony, if he gets a Policeman’s Discount once again for these current charges, he’ll be welcomed back on the force with open arms. “You can be charged of (sic) something and not be convicted of it, and then we can bring you back on as regular duty,” Roybal added. It’s great that they will potentially have the opportunity to do get him back out there pointing a gun at people. I sense a threepeat in Officer Burt’s future.
Another less than shocking bit of history is that Burt was also involved in a shooting back in 2009 that like every other police shooting in the history of the City of Las Vegas was ruled justifiable.