USA – Cleveland, Ohio: Exclusive: Attorney Says Officers’ Use of Taser was ‘Torturous’ (2012-01-04)

Published on January 4 2012 by admin

[[SUMMARY / COMMENTS : Aaron Hayward’s lawyer charges that the Cleveland police conducted a racially motivated, illegal home invasion during the early morning hours of January 23, 2011. They broke down the front door of the Hayward family home using the butt of a shotgun. 39-year-old Aaron Hayward was tased 5 or 6 times in a manner that was “torturous and excessive.” “The taser was deployed an actual 30 seconds of bursts from the taser. That’s enough to kill someone,” the family’s lawyer said. He was then tasered again lying on the ground in front of his house.]]

Fox 8 News Reporter, by Elisa Amigo

CLEVELAND, Ohio—

In a federal lawsuit filed Tuesday, Essex Hayward, his wife, Annie, and their son, Aaron, claimed the Cleveland Clinic Police Department conducted a racially motivated, illegal home invasion during the early morning hours of January 23, 2011.

The attorneys for the Hayward family also believe Cleveland Clinic police officers acted in a manner that exhibited excessive violence and unreasonable force.

According to the lawsuit filed by Cleveland-area civil rights attorney David Malik, the police officers broke down the front door of the Hayward family home using the butt of a shotgun. According to Malik, 39-year-old Aaron Hayward was tased in a manner that was “torturous and excessive.”

“Aaron Hayward is a very lucky man that he didn’t die or wasn’t severely injured,” said family attorney Donald Riemer. “The taser was deployed, I believe five or six times in short bursts totaling anywhere from 30-40 seconds.”

Riemer says the recommendations set forth by Taser International are in stark contrast to the officer’s actions that night.

“The suggested or recommend use is two five-second bursts. In this case of Aaron, we think we recorded an actual 30 seconds of bursts from the taser. That’s enough to kill someone,” he said.

The attorney says after Aaron was tased several officers dragged him into the driveway and allegedly beat him with a baton, and a taser, as he was lying face down.

“He was drive-tased, meaning they, the police officers from the Clinic, put the taser directly against his body, which doesn’t debilitate–it causes significant pain, and it really is punitive at that point.”

Riemer says the officers also showed signs of racial motivation.

“We have seven white police officers who arrested or attempted to arrest a black male and enter his parents’ home. I think the evidence will bear out there was racial motivation behind this. Particularly, when both the mother and father heard these officers using that word, the N-word. There’s never any excuse for that. These officers were clearly not acting appropriately, to say the least.”

The Cleveland Clinic released the following statement regarding the incident:

“The Cleveland Clinic does not tolerate racist or illegal behavior and takes any such allegations very seriously. We thoroughly investigated the Haywards’ allegations and determined they were untrue. In addition, the Haywards’ lawsuit contains many inaccuracies and false accusations. Our police officers acted lawfully and with appropriate force in making the arrest of Aaron Hayward, who had threatened and assaulted our officers. He was indicted by the grand jury and pled guilty to charges. At no time did Cleveland Clinic police officers threaten violence to Mr. Essex or Mrs. Annie Hayward or use any racial slurs. We believe these allegations are meritless and we will vigorously defend against them in court.”

http://www.fox8.com/news/wjw-taser-lawsuit-cleveland-clinic-officers-follow-up-txt,0,2142431.story

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