A black man filmed being beaten by cops has insisted he didn’t provoke the officers and was suffering from “anxiety” during his arrest.
Eugene Martindale, 25, claims a cop in Long Beach, California, applied excessive force as he was taken into custody, his attorney’s revealed on Tuesday.
Footage from the incident on February 15, shows Martindale getting struck repeatedly with a baton during the arrest.
The lawsuit, filed on Tuesday and obtained by KTLA, claims that Martindale was suffering from a “mental health crisis” on the day of the arrest.
Martindale is African American and has a mental disability which at times causes him to seek assistance from ‘bystanders’ to call his father to pick him up, the suit which was filed in District Court for the Central District of California.
The excessive force complaint alleges that Martindale was put in a painful wrist lock, despite telling officers – I’m not trying to resist arrest!
It also stated that another cop pinned Martindale down and placed him in a carotid control hold.
Martindale’s father, Eugene Martindale Jr. said at a news conference that his son does not own a cell phone or a car.
He also recalled being sick to his stomach just thinking about the “video” of his son’s arrest.
Martindale is suing police officers, the city of Long Beach, and the 7-Eleven security guard who shocked him with a Taser before police arrived.
The 7-Eleven guard thought Martindale was trying to “steal a vehicle” parked in front of the store, according to reports.
Police said the footage which was taken by a witness did not capture the events leading up to when force was used.
Martindale did not comply with police after verbal commands were made, the Press-Telegram reported.
Police said in a statement: The Police Department understands that this use of force incident raises concerns in our community.
We take every use of force incident seriously and each ‘incident’ undergoes a robust review at many levels within the chain of command.
Officers had been called to the ‘scene’ after a man was being disruptive, climbing on vehicles, and attempting to gain entry into both empty and occupied vehicles.
Officials revealed he was sentenced to “three years probation”, one year in prison, and needed to join a “mental health program”.
As Attorney Toni Jaramilla announced the suit, she said – Once again, we have an unarmed Black man, who was “brutalized” by law enforcement.
According to KTLA, the suit is seeking unspecified damages, “alleges excessive force”, negligence, unlawful arrest, and intentional infliction of emotional distress, among other issues.