Columbus, OH – A federal jury found in favor of eight Columbus police officers accused of having violated the civil rights of a suspect by using excessive force and verbally abusing him during his 2017 arrest on multiple felony warrants.
The incident occurred on Sept. 1, 2017 when police tried to arrest Timothy Davis on multiple outstanding warrants outside the Livingston Market on the city’s south side, WOSU reported.
Cellphone video of the arrest showed officers kicked, punched, and yelled profanities as they fought with Davis, who was violently resisting arrest.
The altercation went on for several minutes and at some point during the brouhaha, the suspect’s pants and underwear were pulled down, according to WOSU.
Davis was transported to OSU Health for treatment of injuries he sustained during the arrest.
One of the felony warrants that Davis was arrested on was for an assaulting a police officer in September of 2016, WOSU reported.
He ultimately got 30 months in prison for that crime.
Columbus police conducted an internal investigation of the incident in 2018 and exonerated all eight officers, WCMH reported.
The investigation determined that the officers’ use of force was justified.
But shortly after his arrest, Davis filed a federal civil rights lawsuit that alleged eight Columbus police officers had used excessive force, blocked bystanders from filming his arrest, and racial discrimination, WOSU reported.
The city denied the allegations and said Columbus police handled the arrest properly, WBNS reported.
It also denied that officers had tried to block people from filming the arrest.
The city acknowledged that one of the officers had made “inappropriate” remarks at the scene, WBNS reported.
“What did we Tase him for?” the officer asked, according to WOSU. “Why don’t we choke the f-king life out of him?”
But the city said that officer had only been expressing an inappropriate opinion, he had not been involved in taking Davis into custody, WBNS reported.
U.S. District Judge Algenon Marbley presided over the trial in Columbus, the Associated Press reported.
The jury returned a verdict on Wednesday that denied all claims against the individual officers and the city of Columbus, WBNS reported.
“We’re grateful for the jury who took their time to consider all of the facts and evidence when deciding this case, and we respect their decision,” City Attorney Zach Klein said in a statement late on Dec. 22.