Lawsuit filed on behalf of arrested protesters in Ferguson, Mo.

A lawsuit filed over the police treatment of protesters in Ferguson, Mo., seeks $41.5 million in damages on behalf of five people who were arrested.
By Frances Burns  |  Updated Aug. 29, 2014 at 8:18 AM
share with facebook
share with twitter
1 of 3
| License Photo

ST. LOUIS, Aug. 28 (UPI) -- Police were "out of control" in their response to demonstrations in Ferguson, Mo., a lawyer said Thursday as he sued the city and St. Louis County.

Malik Z. Shabazz, the president of Black Lawyers for Justice, based in Washington, filed the federal lawsuit seeking $41.5 million on behalf of five protesters arrested between Aug. 10 and Aug. 13. He said he expects more plaintiffs to come forward.

Shabazz called the response to the demonstrations "virtually a police riot."

"Police were out of control," he said, adding that "excessive force" was used frequently.

The death of Michael Brown, 18, an unarmed black teenager shot by a white police officer set off large protests. Police responded with a show of force, including military vehicles and weapons.

Thousands of people attended Brown's funeral Monday.

Tracey White, one of the plaintiffs, said she and her son were arrested at a McDonald's in Ferguson on Aug. 13 as they waited for her husband. She said officers with rifles stormed the restaurant.

"It looked like something out of a movie. It was so horrifying," she said.

White said she and her son were arrested for "failure to disperse" and released a few hours later. She said police knocked her down when they detained her.

The city and county police chiefs are also named as defendants along with police officers.

Related UPI Stories
Trending Stories