Tag Archives: civil rights violations

Chicago Cop Who Shot Teens on Video Leaked by Judge Charged With Using Unreasonable Force (Update)

Marco Proano, the Chicago police officer who was recorded by a dash cam shooting at a car full of teenagers in December 2013, has now been indicted for civil rights violations. He stands accused of using unreasonable force against two of those teenagers, both of whom were injured in the shooting.

As was reported last year by CopBlock Network Contributor , the dash camera footage of that shooting only came to light almost two years later when an ex-judge leaked it to the public. In doing so, retired Cook County Judge Andrew Berman described the video as “the most disturbing thing he has seen in his 35 years in the Windy City court system.” (That says a lot when you are discussing violence in Chicago.) Which of course means that not one single one of the Good Cops in the video or who later watched the video and then decided to try and make sure it never saw the light of day again did anything to prevent that Bad Apple from spoiling the bunch.

Watching the video, it could not be more obvious that the teens represented no danger whatsoever to Officer Proano (or any other police on the scene) as they backed away from him. In fact, the video shows another car arrive at a nearby house and then back up out of the area shortly before the shooting. If anything, Proano endangered those innocent bystanders by shooting a dozen shots at the teens while they were in the same general area as them.

The teens had only been stopped for speeding, but the car they were in was later determined to be stolen. However, the one teen charged with possession of a stolen vehicle subsequently was acquitted of the charges.

Via Fox6Now.com:

The video shows Proano shooting multiple times at the vehicle as the driver tries to back away. The car then hits a streetlight before one injured teen stumbles out.

Police had pulled over the car with six teens for speeding, according to CNN affiliate WLS. One teen was wounded in the shoulder, the other in his hip and heel.

The victims suffered bodily injuries because of “unreasonable force by a police officer,” according to the indictment.

“When a police officer uses unreasonable force, it has a harmful effect on not only the victims, but also the public, who lose faith and confidence in law enforcement,” said Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois.

He said his office will continue to “vigorously” pursue civil right prosecutions of police officers to “strengthen trust in the police.”

The Chicago police department said it is fully cooperating with the US attorney’s office and has “zero tolerance for proven misconduct.”

As is noted in the full Fox 6 article, Officer Proano was finally fired after the video became public. Also, taxpayers had to bail out the Chicago Police Department once again, as a result of his actions.  The two teens shot during the incident received a $360,000 settlement.

Martese Johnson Sues Virginia Alcohol Beverage Control Agents Over Beating

The University of Virginia honors student, who was beaten bloody while being arrested (see video below) in March on suspicion of using a fake ID, has filed a $3 million lawsuit against agents working for the Virginia Alcohol Beverage and Control Department. Martese Johnson, who maintains that he was not using a fake ID, was confronted by agents Jared Miller, Thomas Custer and John Cielakie outside a Charlottesville bar. Charges were later dropped and Johnson has no prior criminal history.

Johnson has sued on the grounds of false arrest, excessive use of force, civil rights violations, and a failure to train or supervise the agents adequately. Within the lawsuit, Johnson and his lawyers state, “Agents of ABC have a history of aggressive, excessive and unjustified behavior in effectuating their duties.” Johnson, who is black, also alleges that race played a factor in his arrest and subsequent beating by the agents, all of whom are white.

Via the Huffington Post:

The white agents arrested Johnson, a member of the school’s honor committee, outside a Charlottesville bar in March. They believed he was using a fake ID, which the suit said was incorrect. Johnson has said race was a factor in the incident.

Johnson’s arrest was widely seen in a video posted online. It sparked student protests at the school and fed a debate on U.S. police treatment of minorities.

A gash in Johnson’s head required 10 stitches. His defense attorney has said that just before handcuffing him, ABC agents took Johnson to the ground, striking his head on the pavement.

Johnson was charged with obstruction of justice and public intoxication. A prosecutor said in June he would not pursue charges against Johnson or the agents: Jared Miller, Thomas Custer and John Cielakie.

The agents were returned to duty in August after a review showed they did not breach policy during the arrest.

The Virginia Attorney General’s Office had no immediate comment on the suit.

Martese Johnson Before After

Martese Johnson: Before and After

Johnson also states that the gashes to his head, which required 10 stitches to close has resulted in permanent scarring and disfigurement to his face.

In an incident that took place in April of 2013, another University of Virginia student was shot at after ABC agents in Charlottesville mistook bottled water for alcohol. When a half dozen men and a woman dressed in plain clothes rushed her car, including one that jumped on top of her car and another that pulled out a gun, Elizabeth Daly panicked (like most normal people would) and tried to drive away. Later, after the shooting stopped, she was charged with three felonies, all of which were dropped the next day. She filed a $40 million lawsuit in March of 2014. It was eventually settled for $212,000 and an “oops, our bad” letter from the Alcoholic Beverage Control board

Lawsuit Claims Las Vegas Police Officer Pulled Down Woman’s Pants, Exposed Himself On Domestic Call

Las Vegas Police Sexual Assault Soloman Coleman

A federal lawsuit alleges a “lewd and disgusting” Las Vegas police officer pulled down a woman’s pants, photographed her, and then exposed himself.

A lawsuit filed in federal court on May 27 alleges a “lewd and disgusting” Las Vegas police officer pulled down a woman’s pants, photographed her, and then exposed himself.

Sasha Boseke says she called the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department on June 1, 2013, after a “domestic incident” with her boyfriend, who assaulted her. The boyfriend was arrested.

The lawsuit claims that after a female officer had already taken photos of her injuries, Officer Solomon Coleman waited until all other officers left, and followed Boseke to her bedroom where he told her to pull down her shorts so he could see her bruises.

When Boseke “refused to expose her body,” Coleman “forcefully pulled down [her] shorts and undergarments, and, further, told [her] to lean over her bed, which exposed her nude body” the lawsuit says.

While bent over her bed, nude from the waist down, “Coleman took photographs of [Boseke’s] nude body with a cell phone camera,” without her consent and then “exposed his penis to [her] and made lewd and vile remarks.”

“At no time did [Boseke] consent in any manner to the lewd and disgusting conduct of Coleman, nor did [she] engage in any consensual sexual activity with defendant Coleman,” the lawsuit states.

Boseke says Coleman told her, “he had to leave but that he would return that evening.” When the officer did in fact return, Boseke refused to let him in, and called the police to report him.

An internal police investigation into the incident found that, according to his activity log, Coleman remained at Boseke’s apartment for 36 minutes after all of the other officers had left.

After pictures and other materials showing the covert filming of sex acts were found on Coleman’s phone, he was indicted by a grand jury and charged with two counts of oppression under color of office, two counts of open or gross lewdness, indecent exposure, and capturing an image of the private area of another person – all misdemeanors.

Coleman, who no longer works for the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, is scheduled for criminal trial on June 29.

In the federal lawsuit, Boseke is seeking punitive damages for assault and battery, emotional distress, civil rights violations and negligence.

Las Vegas police have refused to comment on “pending litigation.”

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