Melvin Jones III has filed a federal lawsuit against the Massachusetts city of Springfield, its police commissioner, and six officers. He is alleging the excessive use of police force and the violation of his constitutional rights.
Jones, who is black, claims that he was beaten, kicked, pushed, and struck with a flashlight and called a racial epithet during a traffic stop over a faulty muffler in November 2009. He says that he was beaten unconscious, sustained broken bones and teeth, and was at least partially blinded in one eye. A witness captured the incident on video. Jones was charged with resisting arrest and drug possession.
Jones says that the six cops named in the Massachusetts police brutality complaint tried to cover up the assault on him. One of the police offices, Jeffrey Asher, allegedly struck him with a flashlight at least 15 times. Asher was fired from the job and faces criminal charges. The three other cops that were at the traffic stop, Officers Michael Sedergren, Theodore Truiolo, and Lt. John Bobianski were disciplined. Jones is seeking unspecified monetary damages and fees and wants a jury trial.
Meantime, the police are saying that Jones was only subdued after he tried to get a hold of one of their guns. However, the footage of the Jones being apprehended by the Springfield officers has attracted a lot of attention and outrage.
Massachusetts Police Brutality
Police officers are never allowed to use police brutality or excessive force when doing their job. Boston police brutality is a violation of a person’s civil rights. It doesn’t matter whether or not you’ve committed a crime.
Many people who have been the victim of police violence are too scared to report what happened. However, not only may you have grounds for filing a Boston injury lawsuit but criminal charges may even be filed against the offending officer if the incident were brought to light.
Springfield man files suit against city, police, Boston Herald, January 3, 2011
Suit filed in U.S. District Court against Springfield, police commissioner and 6 officers claiming brutality in arrest of Melvin Jones III, MassLive, January 1, 2011
Springfield Police Department launches criminal investigation of four officers who beat black suspect, MassLive, January 7, 2010
Controversial Springfield Mass. arrest caught on videotape, NECN, January 8, 2010