TWIN FALLS, Idaho (CN) - City police fractured an innocent man's skull by beating him as he drove a friend to the store to pick up groceries for his invalid mother, the man claims in court.
Michael Savage sued Twin Falls, its Police Chief Brian Pike, and the officers who allegedly beat him, Timothy Arredondo and Isaiah Day, in Federal Court.
Savage claims the officers stopped him for a cracked windshield and beat him senseless as they sought for a drug dealer who is not him.
An off-duty officer called the patrolmen and told them a suspected drug dealer was driving on suspended license, Savage says in the complaint.
"Officer Arredondo contacted the off-duty officer by phone and was advised that the suspect had exited his vehicle and was walking towards the house," the complaint states. "When Officers Arredondo and Day arrived at the house, they observed the garage door shutting. Officers Arredondo and Day then observed two unidentified males enter a large Dodge Ram truck and depart the residence.
"Officer Arredondo observed as the truck backed out of the driveway that it had a cracked front windshield. Officer[s] Arredondo and Day had no prior knowledge whether the drug suspect was one of the two individuals in the Dodge Ram Truck. In fact, the suspect was not in the truck."
Savage was driving his friend to the store to pick up groceries for the friend's invalid mother, he says in the complaint. Arredondo and Day stopped him for the cracked windshield.
Coleman said he drove well under the speed limit for about a block and a half until it was safe to pull over. The defendants interpreted this as an "attempt to elude," and made a felony stop, with guns drawn, and ordered both men out of the truck, according to the complaint.
Coleman claims he was scared and did not know why he was being arrested. He acknowledged that he continued to hold onto his truck after being ordered to put his hands behind his back. The set off Arredondo, who kneed him, pulled his hair, and punched him in the head, according to the complaint.
"During this time, officer Day also hit plaintiff in the right side of his face, near the eye, in order to get plaintiff to release the side of the truck," the complaint states. "Plaintiff released the truck and Officer Day shifted his hip and flipped plaintiff to the ground, resulting in all three men landing on the ground. Upon hitting the ground, officer Arredondo continued to hit plaintiff in the side of the face."
Coleman was handcuffed as he lay bleeding on the ground.
He was taken to a hospital, where he was treated for a concussion and a fractured occipital lobe.
He seeks punitive damages for constitutional violations, negligent supervision and training, negligent retention, civil assault and battery, and false imprisonment and arrest.
He is represented by R. Keith Roark.
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