BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — A trial date has now been set for a former Bismarck Police officer accused of using excessive force. George Huff pleaded not guilty to the simple assault charge.

According to the probable cause affidavit, Huff responded to a report of a person on the road, near 24th Street and Main Avenue, in Bismarck.

Officers say as Huff tried to handcuff the suspect, there was a physical altercation where Huff allegedly struck the man in the head and face with a closed fist three to four times, then elbowed the back of his neck.

And, after an investigation was fired from the department.

Huff told investigators he believed the man was trying to bite him. Huff’s lawyer previously said Huff was forced to make a split-second, life-or-death decision, against a man who has a history of resisting and assaulting police.

Documents state the altercation sent the man to the emergency room twice for cuts, bruising, swelling, and possible fractures around his left eye.

The trial is set for December 14.