Warwick police officer charged with simple assault

Published on Thursday, July 27, 2023

An indictment, information, or complaint is merely an allegation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Attorney General Peter F. Neronha and Colonel Bradford E. Connor, Chief of the Warwick Police Department, announced today that an officer with the Warwick Police Department has been charged in Third Division District Court with simple assault stemming from an incident on July 15, 2023.

On July 27, 2023, Sergeant Britton Kelly (age 55) was charged by Warwick Police with one count of simple assault. Kelly was arraigned and released on $1,000 personal recognizance. The Court also issued a No Contact Order with the victim. 

As alleged, on July 15, 2023, officers from the Warwick Police Department responded to a domestic disturbance on Amsterdam Avenue in Warwick. Officers arrested a female suspect for her role in the domestic incident. During her arrest, the female suspect’s husband, Ryan York, intervened and attempted to physically pull one of the officers away from her. Officers then arrested Mr. York and placed him in the rear of a police vehicle.

As further alleged, a short time later Sgt. Kelly proceeded to the rear of the vehicle where Mr. York was handcuffed and restrained in his seatbelt and kicked him in the head. It is alleged that Sgt. Kelly then struck Mr. York in the face before forcibly removing him from the rear of the vehicle.

The Warwick Police Department reported the incident to the Office of the Attorney General and the matter was jointly investigated by the Warwick Police Department and the Office pursuant to the Attorney General’s Protocol for the Review of Incidents Involving the Use of Deadly Force, Excessive Force and Custodial Death.

The defendant is scheduled for a pre-trial conference on August 10, 2023, in Third Division District Court.