Shaken Man Sues Trigger-Happy Torrance Cops

     LOS ANGELES (CN) – Torrance police smashed into and shot up the truck of a slim, short white man while looking for rogue policeman Christopher Dorner, who was black, 270 lbs., 6 foot 2, and driving a different make of pickup, the white man claims in court.
     David Perdue, a father of two, sued Torrance, its Police Department, and two Doe officers for excessive force, false arrest, battery and other counts, in Federal Court.
     Perdue claims Torrance officials ridiculously passed off the officers’ actions as “reasonable,” and “appropriate,” even though the “defendants later claimed they could not actually see who they were shooting at.”
     Perdue was driving a Honda Ridgeline and the police were looking for a Nissan Titan when they fired at least three shots into his driver’s side window, Perdue says in the complaint. The officers escaped without punishment and are still patrolling the streets, Perdue says.
     Police scared the hell out of Perdue on the morning of Feb. 7, 2013, when Dorner was still at large. Dorner had killed two people, including a fellow officer, and eventually died in a burning house after the manhunt made national headlines.
     According to Perdue’s lawsuit, two officers stopped him and told him they were looking for Dorner, a 6-foot-2-inch, 270-lb. black man, who had been seen driving a gray Nissan Titan pickup.
     Perdue, who was on his way to surf with a buddy before going to his job as a baggage handler at LAX, is white, 5-foot-8 and 155 lbs., he says in the complaint.
     Those officers let him go, and told him to take a different route to his friend’s house. As Perdue drove back the way he had just come, he saw another squad car driving toward him, and pulled his pickup to the side of the road.
     Perdue says it’s unclear if the first two officers told the officers in the second patrol car that his truck was not Dorner’s but “just one of the nearly million other pickup trucks in Los Angeles County.”
     In any event, the complaint states: “Without any warning, the second Torrance police car accelerated to 25-30 miles per hour, suddenly turned and crashed broadside into David’s black Honda Ridgeline, spinning him around and tearing off the rear axle. The airbags and side curtain airbags in David’s vehicle deployed. David’s upper body was thrown over the console, toward the passenger seat.”
     Perdue says the officers “opened fire from inside their car,” firing “at least three bullets into the open driver’s side window of David’s vehicle.”
     “The bullets went through the side-curtain airbags, past David’s head and through the front windshield. Even though it should have been apparent that David was not a 6-foot-2-inch 270-pound black man, defendants later claimed they could not actually see who they were shooting at,” the complaint states.
     Purdue says a female officer came to his driver’s side door and pointed her gun at his head. He was forced out of his pickup, and made to lay face down on the pavement.
     “Even though it was now very clear that David was not the person they were looking for, the police detained him for an hour,” the complaint states.
     Rather than admit the mistake, in the days after the incident the city attorney claimed the officers’ “attempt to kill someone who they could not see or identify was ‘clearly … reasonable’ and ‘appropriate,” Perdue says in the complaint.
     City officials falsely claimed Perdue was “suddenly leaving,” “fleeing,” and was “veering into” the squad car, Perdue says in the complaint.
     “Defendants also falsely claimed that defendant officers had to make a ‘split-second decision.’ In fact, defendant officers had ample time to assess the situation,” the complaint states.
     Perdue claims the Torrance P.D. refused to cooperate when he asked for copies of the dashboard camera video, the squad car’s black box, and other documents.
     He says the officers involved in the shooting were neither disciplined nor charged.
     Perdue says the accident left him in “constant pain,” and with impaired speech, depression, and continuing nightmares.
     Dorner, a former LAPD police officer, was found dead in a cabin in the San Bernardino Mountains, after the largest manhunt in LAPD history.
     He was suspected of murdering Keith Lawrence and Monica Quan, the daughter of a retired LAPD officer who represented Dorner at his termination hearing. Dorner shot the couple as they sat in their parked car in Irvine on Feb. 3.
     In a manifesto published on Facebook, Dorner claimed the LAPD had fired him to retaliate for his report that another officer had used excessive force.
     Dorner apparently died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head after exchanging gunfire with police while hiding out in the cabin.
     Perdue and his wife seek punitive damages.
     They are represented by Todd Thibodo of Encino.
     A City of Torrance spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

%d bloggers like this: