Mesa Arizona is a large suburb in the Phoenix metro area. It is actually the most populated suburban town in the entire USA. Like other areas that have a large population, there are going to be tensions between the police and the public at any given time. Mesa has been the location of some of the most significant instances of police brutality in recent years.
Unarmed man hit several times during an investigation
The background regarding this beating is related to 911 call that was placed at an apartment complex. When Mesa Police arrived, they found the victim at the scene, along with one other man, who was being accused of trying to force his way into his girlfriend’s apartment. The victim, named Robert Johnson was apparently on a cell phone and did not have any weapons on him at this time. It seems that the altercation may have begun as a result of Johnson continuing to use his phone and disobeying an officer’s commands to move. Video shows one of the officers starting to throw several punches at Johnson shortly after they had isolated him to begin to speak with him. A longer version of the surveillance video shows that over the course of about twenty minutes the group of officers hit the victim, kneed him, and slammed his head into an elevator door.
The Arizona judge that was assigned to the Johnson case eventually dropped all of the related criminal charges for this event that escalated into a police beating. It seems that Johnson was initially cited by the officers regarding his behavior during their interactions. They attempted to allege in their police report that he was being confrontational, and they were concerned for their safety because it seemed that a physical altercation would soon begin. The video evidence left no doubt that they were lying regarding his alleged criminal activity.
Members of the community were concerned that these activities are indicative of a much larger problem. In the last few years, some other incidents include Mesa Police fatally shooting an unarmed pest control worker who begged for his life and injuring an 84 year old woman by forcing her to the ground. These actions are highly inappropriate, yet they seem to occur with regularity.
Fighting back against the police
Although it is never easy for an individual to take on the police and local government, the help of an experienced lawyer makes the battle much easier. Regardless of whether criminal charges are filed against a police officer or not, a lawyer can file a civil lawsuit on your behalf related to excessive use of force and related violations of civil rights. In cases such as this that have clear video evidence, departments are often tempted to pay the victims through settlements rather than have to deal with further negative publicity and the loss of time, money, and other controversies related to a trial.
Damages related to police beatings can include medical bills and other hospitalization expenses, lost wages, and non-economic compensation related to the harm caused and reckless behavior of the guilty officers. These losses and more may be factored into the payout to the victim.
Get help from a Mesa police brutality attorney
If you have been hurt by police officers from Mesa or other nearby departments in Arizona, it is imperative to get legal help as soon as possible. Your lawyer can file one or more claims against the officer and town for violations of your civil rights.