INDIANAPOLIS – A federal judge sentenced a former Muncie police officer to 10 years in federal prison for abusing arrestees and then lying about it on police reports.

Chase Winkle learned his punishment Wednesday during a sentencing hearing in Indianapolis. He had previously pleaded guilty to 11 counts related to excessive force and obstruction of justice.

Winkle admitted he unjustly punched, kicked and used a stun gun on arrestees and then filed false reports about his conduct. The indictment filed in March 2020 alleged Winkle used unnecessary aggression against people in custody and then worked with other officers to cover it up.

The incidents happened in 2018 and 2019, when Winkle’s father was the police chief. In most instances, Winkle claimed arrestees were resisting law enforcement to justify striking or kicking them. Sometimes he falsely claimed the arrestees had resisted; other times, he omitted key details from arrest reports.

In one case, Winkle used a knee drop on a man’s head. He then used a Taser on the man while he was still on the ground. The man was not resisting arrest and had only verbally insulted Winkle during the incident; Winkle lied that the man had resisted in order to justify the use of force.

In another case, Winkle and another officer chased after a pair of juveniles. Winkle tracked one of them to a nearby lawn, where the minor complied with commands and showed he didn’t have a weapon. Winkle kicked the juvenile in the head, then got on his knees and punched and slapped him four times.

Winkle knocked another arrestee unconscious by kicking him in the head. He then filed a false report saying the individual came at him with closed fists and resisted arrest. On another occasion, Winkle punched a man during a February 20219 traffic stop. He then kneed him in the torso four times, omitting the second use of force from the arrest report.

Jeremy Gibson

Another former officer, Jeremy Gibson, was sentenced to 14 months in prison during a hearing Wednesday. He pleaded guilty to two felony counts related to excessive force and obstruction of justice.

Both Winkle and Gibson received two years of supervised release.

Previously, two other ex-officers—Joseph Krejsa and Dalton Kurtz—were sentenced to federal prison in the case.

A fifth officer, Corey Posey, is due in court next month. His original trial ended in a mistrial.