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Former Philadelphia Cop, Once A Hero Of City’s Force, Hits Another Low Spot

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(Philadelphia police officer Richard DeCoatsworth in 2009, after recovering from a shotgun blast to the face.)

(Philadelphia police officer Richard DeCoatsworth in 2009, after recovering from a shotgun blast to the face.)

Steve Tawa Steve Tawa
Steve Tawa joined KYW Newsradio in 1990, and splits his time between...
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By Steve Tawa

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A former Philadelphia police officer, who once sat with Michelle Obama during a presidential address after being hailed as a hero cop, has been hauled into court by a Port Richmond neighbor who alleges the cop threatened him.

Richard DeCoatsworth, 25, retired from the force last year following an incident in which he was accused of using excessive force for shooting a motorcyclist in the leg (see related story).

Today, DeCoatsworth and his neighbor, 26-year-old Steven Kocher, agreed to a “mutual stay-away order” for a year, after Kocher filed a private criminal complaint.

“I’m definitely concerned for my safety of my life and my mother’s safety,” Kocher told reporters afterward, but says he and DeCoatsworth were once close neighbors. “It all stems from a friendly, $2,000 loan that I received from Richard about a year ago.”

Kocher acknowledges that he hasn’t been able to repay it.

“I don’t have any money. He chased me down recently, put me in his truck, and took me for a ride. He tried to scare me.”

Attorney James Binns, who represents DeCoatsworth, says he and his client agreed to the stay-away order but “vigorously dispute” Kocher’s allegations.

DeCoatsworth rose to acclaim as a rookie in 2007 when he took a shotgun blast to the face during a car stop, but still managed to chase down suspects as they fled.

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