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'Excessive Force': Dallas City Marshal Who Slammed Homeless Man Charged and Arrested

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CORRECTION, Aug. 9: The original version of this story misidentified the officer with Charles Ibarra during the arrest of Deshode Rayvon Patton.

In February 2021, as plunging temperatures brought on by Winter Storm Uri froze much of Dallas and left some without electricity for days, Dallas' homeless residents headed to the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center for warmth.

Among them was Deshode Rayvon Patton, who was 29 at the time. Patton’s stay at the convention center was cut short for a trip to jail courtesy of Dallas city marshal’s officers. They said he resisted arrest. Patton says that wasn’t true and that one of the officers, Charles Ibarra, used excessive force during the arrest.

“I really got the ass end of all of it,” Patton recalled by phone to the Observer. “I went to jail for 
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Dallas City Marshal's Officer Charles Ibarra was arrested and charged with official oppression and tampering with a government record.
Dallas County Sheriff's Office
that.”

Late last month, over a year after Patton was charged, the Dallas Police Department arrested Ibarra for official oppression and tampering with a government record relating to Patton's arrest.

Ibarra’s telling of the events that day are detailed in police reports of the incident obtained through an open records request. Here’s what Ibarra said happened at the convention center.

Around 2 p.m. on Feb. 17, 2021, officers with the Dallas City Marshal’s Office responded to a complaint about smoke coming from one of the restrooms at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center. One of them was Ibarra. The other was an officer identified as J. Calloway. When they entered the restroom, the two heard a flush and smelled “fresh cigarette smoke,” according to a DPD report of the incident. Then, they saw Patton exiting one of the stalls. Patton was apparently the only other person in the restroom. When officers checked the stall, they found what looked like loose tobacco in the toilet.

Officers escorted Patton out of the convention center to identify him and issue a citation for smoking in a prohibited place. The report claims Patton became agitated and started yelling at officers. Then, it says officers tried to “usher [Patton] toward the doors.” Patton turned toward the officers “with closed fists,” the report claims. Officers told him to turn around and continue out the convention center doors because he was causing a disturbance, it says. Things escalated from there.

“As [arresting officer Ibarra] again ushered [Patton] towards the doors, he tensed up and began to raise his hand which was still in a fist,” the report says. “[Arresting officer Ibarra] utilized an open hand take down and commanded [Patton] to turn over and place his hands behind his back. After several repeated commands, [Patton] refused to comply. After a brief struggle, [Patton] was placed in hand restraints and escorted out of the convention center.”

“I really got the ass end of all of it." – Deshode Rayvon Patton

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A separate records request turned up a similar report of the same incident. This report came from the Dallas City Marshal’s Office. There are some key differences, though. For one thing, it’s a lot more direct. Another thing: it redacts Ibarra’s use of force without much of an explanation.

It starts: “At approximately 2 p.m., arrested person Patton, Deshode was found smoking in the restroom of a public building and did intentionally resist officers in full police uniform by tensing up, pulling away and refusing to comply with commands.”

The report also identifies Calloway as one of the other arresting officers. Calloway was the one who found the loose tobacco in the toilet, according to the report. It then details how Patton became agitated, the same way the DPD report describes it. The rest of the incident, ostensibly the part where Ibarra uses force, is blacked out. A city of Dallas spokesperson couldn’t explain the difference in redactions between the two documents and said the use of force should have been redacted in both reports of the arrest.

Either way, a DPD public integrity investigation into the incident that was concluded last month found that body camera footage didn’t support Ibarra’s claim that Patton was resisting arrest. “It appears a false entry was made,” the DPD public integrity investigation said.

Patton told the Observer that on the day of the arrest he was just using the restroom when the cops came in. Someone was smoking in the restroom, but it wasn’t him, Patton said. Ibarra and Calloway didn’t believe Patton, so they asked him to leave and began escorting him out.

Patton said he had his hands in the air. Then, he turned around and was slammed to the ground three or four times, he said.

“It was real excessive force,” said Patton, who is still homeless. “There’s like five, six of them and only one of me.”

The Observer’s efforts to get the body camera footage that covered this incident were rejected. Both the city and DA’s office said there was a pending investigation, which barred the release of the body camera footage. That’s because Patton was still facing a warrant for his arrest over the incident with Ibarra until May this year. The charges against Patton have since been dismissed, but now the body camera footage is being used in the case against Ibarra, allowing the DA’s office and police to continue withholding it.

An anonymous complaint filed with the city auditor’s office claims several of the marshal’s office’s top brass received verbal and written complaints about Ibarra’s actions and saw footage of the arrest but determined he did nothing wrong.

The ethics complaint names four individuals at the Dallas City Marshal’s Office: Marshal Gary Lindsey, Sgt. David Hobbs, Chief Clifton Knight and Chief Scott Whitworth. It claims that Lindsey, Hobbs, Knight, and Whitworth violated several city policies, including dereliction, corruption and falsification of documents, all in an attempt to cover for Ibarra. The city confirmed that the auditor’s office received the complaint.

The complaint says that someone reported an illegal arrest to Knight, the arrest of Patton by Ibarra. Hobbs investigated, according to the complaint, and “protected Charles Ibarra … by stating in the report that Charles did nothing wrong.”

Knight signed the report, the complaint said.

“David, Clifton, Gary, and Scott saw the videos of the illegal arrest and said that Charles did no wrongdoing because even though it was apparent that the arrest was wrong, Charles was covered due to the relation between David, Clifton, Gary, [and] Scott,” the complaint says. It also says that Ibarra and Hobbs are close, which created a conflict of interest when Hobbs was the one investigating the claims against Ibarra. The complaint says, for example, that Ibarra would often refer to Hobbs as “dad.” Hobbs would call Ibarra “junior,” according to the complaint.

The complaint then goes on to say that DPD conducted a public integrity unit investigation into Ibarra. In April, Lindsey resigned to “pursue other opportunities” and was replaced by DPD’s David Pughes as the interim city marshal, according to a memo sent by City Manager T.C. Broadnax. Pughes was most recently the director of the Office of Integrated Public Safety Solutions. He was also the interim chief of police for DPD.

Reached for comment, Lindsey said he's now doing investigative work for a law firm. The anonymous ethics complaint, he said, didn't have the facts straight. He said he had every intention of investigating Ibarra.

"Somebody had filed a complaint with ethics saying that I wasn't going to do a fair investigation," Lindsey said. "I had gotten the body camera video put together and then the ethics complaint got filed, and they said, 'We need to send that over to the police department' and it got transferred. That was the bottom line to it. I started the investigation, then it got moved."

The other officers named in the ethics complaint didn't respond to the Observer's requests for comment. For his part, Lindsey attributes the ethics complaint to a disgruntled employee.

**

Before working at the Dallas City Marshal’s Office, Ibarra was an officer with the Dallas Independent School District Police Department.

In 2015, when Ibarra was still with DISD, he tried to pull over 20-year-old Phillip Wilson near Spruce High School. According to The Dallas Morning News, Wilson “ignored [Ibarra’s] commands” and a fight broke out between the two.

According to the News, witnesses told police that Wilson was on top of Ibarra, punching him. That’s when Ibarra fired his gun. The shot missed Wilson, who tried to flee, the News reported. Ibarra was left with minor scrapes and bruises, and Wilson was charged with assault on a public servant.

A DISD records request turned up Ibarra’s personnel file, a letter from the department’s assistant chief recommending two days of suspension without pay and a resignation letter.

Nine months after the altercation that led to Ibarra firing his weapon, the assistant chief of the district’s police department was asking for the officer to be suspended without pay for two days.

The letter is vague, only referencing the policies Ibarra violated and an internal affairs investigation report later released to the Observer. It turns out, according to documents from DISD police, that when an assistant principal tried to intervene as Ibarra was questioning a student, the officer “ordered him out of his office, attempted to physically remove the assistant principal from the office and threatened to arrest the assistant principal for interfering with his investigation.”

The letter alleged Ibarra violated two DISD police policies. Both had to do with Ibarra’s behavior.

It ends by saying, “The recommendation has the concurrence of Craig R. Miller, Chief of Police.” The month after this letter was sent, Ibarra filed his resignation. He was hired by the Dallas City Marshal’s Office the following year, in 2016.

"My client looks forward to setting the record straight when he has his day in court." - Kathryn Bishkin, attorney

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On Oct. 12, 2018, Ibarra drove his squad car onto the unpaved roadway in the levees of the Trinity River bottoms. His squad car got stuck. He tried getting it out by stepping on the gas, but that didn’t help much.

A disciplinary letter later given to Ibarra explains, “Your attempts to free the vehicle by excessive acceleration resulted in the vehicle’s emissions system overheating and causing a fire in the trunk area.”

He left the car there for several days. It rained heavily, flooding the squad car with water and mud. “The incident resulted in a total loss of the vehicle and its contents,” the disciplinary letter said. “You eventually filed a report for this incident, but not until October 15, 2018.”

It wasn’t until June 2019 that disciplinary action would be handed down to Ibarra over the incident. His punishment? Five days suspension without pay. Earlier that year, in January 2019, Ibarra would also receive a disciplinary notice for not meeting his goal of clearing DPD Class C warrants. It’s unclear what came of this notice, but Ibarra was allowed to stay with the marshal’s office.

Then, in February 2021, he’d cross paths with Deshode Patton at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center during Winter Storm Uri. When DPD was finished investigating Ibarra, they submitted a grand jury referral. “The [Dallas Sheriff’s Office] issued an arrest warrant for both charges on 7/22/22 and Ibarra turned himself in on 7/29/22,” Kristin Lowman, a DPD spokesperson said in an email. (The charges, official oppression and tampering with a government record, are Class A misdemeanors.)

A spokesperson for the city said Ibarra is on administrative leave pending the outcome of a DPD internal affairs investigation. The Dallas County District Attorney’s Office dropped the charges against Patton on May 31.

Ibarra didn’t respond to multiple requests for comment. His lawyer, Kathryn Bishkin, would only say by email, "My client looks forward to setting the record straight when he has his day in court."






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Jacob Vaughn, a former Brookhaven College journalism student, has written for the Observer since 2018, first as clubs editor. More recently, he's been in the news section as a staff writer covering City Hall, the Dallas Police Department and whatever else editors throw his way.
Contact: Jacob Vaughn