Hummelstown community sounds off about Mearkle verdict

Lisa Mearkle

HUMMELSTOWN, Pa. (WHTM) – The February shooting death of David Kassick didn’t divide Hummelstown, but it didn’t take long for people to choose sides.

The verdict in Officer Lisa Mearkle’s trial was no different.

Officer Mearkle said today she expects to return to her job on the Hummelstown Police force.

The verdict was the talk of the town.

Some said they felt justice wasn’t served and that they were surprised by the verdict.

The release of the Taser video of the shooting had an immediate impact on the community.

“I watched the video his hands were visible and he was on the ground when she asked him to be on the ground,” said Angela Johnston of Hummelstown.

Chris Hunt of Hunt for Justice provides financial help to officers around the country.

He along with the jury watched the entire video.

“You only have a split second to make these decisions, that is all you have,” Hunt said.

Hunt is a police officer from St. Louis.

He says the jury watched the video through the eyes of Officer Mearkle.

He says when hands disappear, the threat level goes up.

“I know they saw it. Everyone in the courtroom saw it and it was shown multiple times and they did see it was obvious,” Hunt said.

Not everyone in the community feels Officer Mearkle should return to her job.

“I feel like Hummelstown will be in fear if she comes back to work here,” said Jessica Bivens, of Hummelstown.

“I doubt she could work as a police officer again because it has probably scared her too and I feel for her, I feel for both,” said Jeanie Vey, of Hummelstown.

Some people put the legal system on trial today. Others disagree.

“It is our process so we have to say that it works,” Sharon Buehler, of Hummelstown, said, “we need to heal and those people involved need to heal and I just think it’s going to take time.”

We visited Hummelstown Police Headquarters to speak with the Police Chief, but he was not in the office.

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