Henry K. Lee
A Richmond police officer pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges that he punched a handcuffed drug suspect.
Dedrick Riley, a five-year veteran, is accused of punching the suspect several times in March and failing to report it, authorities said.
Contra Costa County prosecutors in Martinez charged Riley, 39, with assault under color of authority and filing a false police report.
Defense attorney Harry Stern accused police of retaliating against Riley because the officer was fired in 2006 for allegedly lying about his use of force that year, then won his job back through arbitration.
The drug suspect in the March incident, Ronald Stewart, was never charged with a crime, nor did he complain about Riley, the attorney said.