They Serve, Protect and Shoot You

     UPPER MARLBORO, Md. (CN) – A man who tried to flag down a Maryland cop to help a gunshot victim got a bullet in the neck for his pains, when the officer fired multiple shots at him through the windshield of his police cruiser, the man claims in court.
     Oliver Pearsall sued the Prince George’s County and its police Officer Nicholas Hernandez in Prince George’s County Court.
     Pearsall claims he heard gunfire as he left his housing community in late February, and soon discovered that a man he had intended to meet that night had been shot.
     Pearsall says he called 911, but couldn’t pinpoint his location, so he put the man in his back seat and drove to a familiar intersection.
     On his way, he saw Hernandez’s police cruiser, and tried to get the officer’s attention by pulling in front of it, Pearsall says.
     “The plaintiff after spotting Officer Hernandez’s police cruiser parked behind his vehicle got out of his vehicle to seek the officer’s assistance for Mr. Watson who was lying on the back seat of plaintiff’s vehicle,” the complaint states. “The plaintiff was still on the phone with the 911 emergency operator as he got out of the vehicle.
     After closing the door on his vehicle, the plaintiff had taken couple of steps in the direction of the defendant Officer Hernandez’s police cruiser. Officer Hernandez was still sitting inside his police cruiser when he fired at least two shots at the [sic] through the front window of his police cruiser at the plaintiff.”
     Pearsall says a bullet fragment from Hernandez’s gun caught him in the neck and he went down, still clutching his cell phone with the 911 operator on the line.
     “The plaintiff was given medical treatment for the wound to his neck by the Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department on site,” he says. “The Prince George’s County Fire/EMS personal [sic] completely misdiagnosed the nature of the plaintiff’s injury and instead of taking him to the hospital for X-rays and treatment, plaintiff was taken to the Prince George’s County Police Department … for questioning.”
     Pearsall says he was never charged, never arrested and wasn’t identified as a criminal suspect, though his car and cell phone were confiscated.
     “The plaintiff went to the hospital the next day where it was determined that plaintiff had a bullet fragment in his neck. To date, that bullet fragment was not [sic] been removed from plaintiff’s neck pursuant to the doctor’s recommendation because the fragment is located to [sic] vital areas in plaintiff’s neck.”
     Pearsall says the injury cost him his career as a semi-professional football player.
     He seeks $3 million in compensatory damages and $3 million in punitive damages, for excessive force and battery.
     He is represented by Phillip Thompson, of Point of Rocks, Md.

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