An Indianapolis man has filed a lawsuit against the city’s Metropolitan Police Department alleging he was beaten when cops thought he was on drugs. The man’s behavior, he says, was caused by a seizure disorder, something his sister told the officers as they tried to arrest him mid-seizure.
According to TheIndyChannel.com, Randy Lynn was shoveling snow on a sidewalk of West Washington Street when he fell and bloodied his nose. The paramedics were called and police showed up as Lynn suffered a seizure.
Upon seeing him, according to the lawsuit, officers assumed he was intoxicated. In an effort to “gain control” of Lynn, they reportedly used their Tasers three times and struck him in the head repeatedly. During the struggle, officers took Lynn down while his sister, who was nearby, tried to inform them that her brother was epileptic, not on drugs or drunk.
Lynn maintains he was unaware of what was going on the entire time. The officers allege he grabbed their Taser in an attempt to get it from them, but Lynn says he doesn’t recollect this and any grabbing was unintentional.
Lynn was ultimately arrested and charged with resisting, public intoxication, and one felony count of disarming a police officer. All charges were eventually dropped.
The lawsuit claims that he was the victim of a false arrest, assault, excessive force, and false imprisonment. He also says that the IMPD failed to train officers on identifying seizures and handling people with seizure disorders.
We don’t know if the officers didn’t hear Lynn’s sister as she tried to explain, if they felt threatened by his seizure, or if they simply didn’t care. For their part, the IMPD isn’t commenting.
“Misunderstandings” between cops and citizens happen often and usually right before an arrest. Unfortunately, if you aren’t he one with a badge, your word is often taken with greater suspicion. When it comes right down to it, officials are more likely to believe an officer than a regular citizen, no matter who they are.
Fortunately, when you are accused of a crime, you have the right to a defense attorney—someone who will advocate for your rights and ensure your side is heard. If you are accused of a crime, whether it’s a drug offense or an OWI, we can help. Contact us today to discuss your case.