Federal Civil Rights Lawsuit Alleges Shreveport Police Officers Beat and Abused Mental Health Patient
Jul 30, 2015
Shreveport, LA (Law Firm Newswire) July 29, 2015 – Earlier this month attorneys for Desmond Lewis filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Western District of Louisiana charging that Shreveport police officers had falsely arrested, maliciously prosecuted, and physically abused Lewis during an incident where he was chased while leaving a local pharmacy after picking up medication prescribed for his mental health.
Allegations listed in the complaint include: use of unreasonable and excessive force, false arrest, false imprisonment, malicious prosecution, assault, battery, failure by an officer to intervene, and failure to act under the policy and custom of the police department. The complaint also alleges civil conspiracy and negligent hiring, training and/or supervision by the city of Shreveport with its agents, employees, and police officers.
Lewis was leaving a Walgreen’s Pharmacy, while officers were searching for a burglary suspect, described only as an African-American male, demanded Lewis approach their vehicle. The complaint says that Lewis became scared and ran from the officers who chased Lewis, forcefully “took down” Lewis, restrained, and handcuffed him. Alleging a conspiracy to violate Lewis’ civil rights, the complaint also states the officers knew Lewis was not the suspect for whom they were searching, but decided to arrest him for some pre-textual offense to justify their excessive and unlawful use of force in apprehending and restraining him.
The complaint alleges that Lewis was shoved face-first into the exterior of the officer’s vehicle, punched in the face, struck across his legs with a nightstick, and sodomized – all while handcuffed and unable to defend himself. Lewis was transported to a nearby hospital for treatment and then booked for resisting arrest and battery of a police officer. The charges were subsequently dismissed.
“These acts violate every expectation we have of responsible police conduct and sully the reputation of the many good officers risking their lives daily on the street,” said Lewis’ attorney Antonio M. Romanucci, partner at Romanucci & Blandin, LLC in Chicago, Illinois.
“We are demanding a jury trial and seeking a judgment against the City of Shreveport and the officers involved for compensatory damages, attorney’s fees, and punitive damages,” added Elton Richey of Elton B. Richey & Associates, LLC.
Plaintiff Lewis. The federal lawsuit is civil action No: 5:15-cv-02034.
About Romanucci & Blandin, LLC
Romanucci & Blandin has been rated as a leading civil trial practice law firm in Chicago concentrating in personal injury and police misconduct. The attorneys at the Chicago law firm represent individuals and their families in catastrophic personal injury matters, wrongful death, and workers’ compensation cases.
The cases that are referred to Romanucci & Blandin involve accidents or injuries which occurred due to negligence and carelessness on the part of individuals, governmental bodies and corporations of all sizes. Since its inception more than 15 years ago, Romanucci & Blandin has secured more than $300 million in verdicts and settlements on behalf of their clients.
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About Elton B. Richey & Associates, LLC
Elton B. Richey & Associates, LLC is the Premier Criminal Law Firm in Northwest Louisiana for defending the lives and liberties of the people committed to our care. Our mission is to exonerate them when possible and mitigate when not. We always work to make a positive difference in their lives. Our tactics are to engage with, listen to, and believe in our clients, and understand their needs and goals. We fight inside and outside the courtroom to obtain the best outcome for the client. For more information visit www.eltonrichey.com, go to our page The Law Offices of Elton B. Richey Associates, LLC on Facebook or call (318) 227-1460.