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Plea deal appears to be in the works for former Idaho Springs police officer

Nicholas Hanning tasered a 75-year-old man in May.

IDAHO SPRINGS, Colo. — Life is divided into two parts for Cynthia Flageolle: The good chaos, as she describes it, of life before May 30: six children, one grandchild, a bustling home in Thornton; and the bad chaos of life after May 30: her 75 year-old father, Michael Clark, hospitalized, at times close to death, after being tasered by police.

It was just before midnight on May 30. Clark's next-door neighbor called Idaho Springs police to report an assault. Clark answered the door to his apartment with a small novelty sword in his hand. He put it down when ordered to, but, 19 seconds later, and without any warning, Officer Nicholas Hanning tasered him.  

"I'm disgusted by what happened that night," Flageolle said.

According to Flageolle, her father had a heart attack when he was tasered, then a stroke two days later, and he's spent almost all of the last six months in the hospital or a physical rehab facility.

"He can't do anything on his own, nothing,  At this point, he can't even sit up on his own. His life will never be the same," Flageolle said. 

Hanning, meanwhile, was fired by the Idaho Springs Police Department soon after the incident and then charged with felony assault. But prosecutors recently emailed Flageolle's lawyer saying they plan to offer Hanning a plea deal, which could mean he won't spend any time in prison.

"I think it's ridiculous. I would like to see him held accountable the way you or I would be," Flageolle said.

Flageolle said she's furious about the proposed deal; in particular, she said that prosecutors have never talked to her or her father about it. She said, if a plea deal happens, it would add insult to her father's serious injuries.

"I think prison would be an appropriate sentence. I think it would be an appropriate sentence and it would show that these officers can't get away with it," Flageolle said.

The plea deal could be formally offered as soon as Thursday, when Hanning is due back in court.

Clark was never charged in connection with the assault call. His family is now suing Hanning, two other officers involved in the incident and the city of Idaho Springs.

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