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Ex-officer gets prison sentence for false shooting report

March 3, 2021 GMT

WARREN, Ohio (AP) — A former police officer who falsely claimed that a Black man in a hoodie had shot at him last year is now headed to prison.

Noah Linnen, 24, who served with the Warren police force, was sentenced Tuesday to nine months for tampering with evidence. He also received concurrent six-month sentences for inducing panic and disrupting public services.

Linnen made the false report on Jan. 13, 2020, spurring a major law enforcement response that had police officers from various departments searching for someone who did not exist.

Linnen apologized for his actions at sentencing, saying he had been “experiencing a great deal of stress from my personal and professional lives that I clearly could not cope with.” Linnen also said he has been diagnosed with a “serious disorder,” but he did not disclose further details.

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While noting that Linnen did not have a criminal record before the incident, Trumbull County Common Pleas Court Judge Andrew Logan emphasized that the ex-officer’s actions could have caused serious injury or death. He also noted that people were arrested at gunpoint due to the false claim.

The Warren police department fired Linnen in the weeks after he was charged last year.