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ARTICLE ID 195606

$________ Civil Rights – 5 ft 6 in tall plaintiff walking in train station is stopped by officer after officer receives radio call reporting bank robbery approximately 1/2 hour earlier committed by African-American – Excessive force against defendant police officer – Cervical bulge – Injections.

Queens County, NY

The plaintiff, an African-American male who was 5 ft. 6 in. tall contended that as he was walking through a subway station, he was stopped by the defendant police officer regarding a bank robbery that occurred approximately one-half hour earlier without reasonable suspicion. The plaintiff maintained that although the radio call described a suspect who was at least 6 ft. 3 inches tall, the defendant officer, nonetheless, detained him. The plaintiff maintained that the encounter became more heated, and that the officer pushed him hard against a wall where he struck his head and that as he was on the floor, the officer began beating and kicking him before placing him under arrest for obstruction of governmental administration.

The defendant officer opined that the height of the suspect on the radio call sounded garbled, and that the plaintiff – who was wearing similar clothing as the suspect – was walking quickly. The officer indicated that when their eyes met, the plaintiff suspiciously looked away and contended that he was justified in initially stopping the plaintiff. The officer maintained that he told the plaintiff that he wanted to bring him upstairs to determine if the bank manager could identify him as the suspect. The officer supported that the plaintiff declined to do so, and then reached for his own bag, making the arrest justifiable.

The plaintiff argued that the jury should consider that if the physical description was garbled on the radio, the officer should have requested clarification before stopping individuals walking in the train station. The plaintiff maintained that he suffered a cartilage tear to the dominant wrist that will cause permanent pain and weakness, despite arthroscopic surgery. The plaintiff was held for 24 hours, the DA declined, and the plaintiff was released. The plaintiff also maintained that he suffered a cervical bulge that was confirmed by MRI, which will cause permanent symptoms, despite several epidural steroid injections and radio frequency ablation.

The plaintiff missed approximately one year from his job as a yellow cab driver, and was earning approximately $________ per year.The jury found for the plaintiff and awarded $________, including $________ for past pain and suffering, $________ for future pain and suffering, $________ for false arrest, and $________ for medical bills.

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