Guard charged in wheelchair assault

March 29, 2013 at 3:56 PM
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VANCOUVER, British Columbia, March 29 (UPI) -- A Vancouver, British Columbia, shopping mall security guard faces an assault charge after being caught on video knocking a man in a wheelchair to the floor.

Ali Rahnumah, 30, was one of three undercover security guards who surrounded the one-legged man they suspected of shoplifting at the Pacific Centre Mall in October. A shaky cellphone video obtained by the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. shows a guard swearing before knocking the man out of his wheelchair with a blow to the head.

"I'll [expletive] throw you on the ground and [expletive] you up!" the guard is heard saying. "Don't [expletive] with me ... On the ground! On the ground! On the ground! You're so stupid -- on your chest!"

Rahnumah, who was honored as the "loss prevention officer of the year" in 2011 by Downtown Vancouver's Business Improvement Association, was fired by his employer, Genesis Security, shortly after the CBC aired the video.

"He had done well and I was surprised," Ashley Meehan, vice president at Genesis Security Group, said. "It's not in line with what we expect of our employees. So why it came to that I can't explain."

Rahnumah -- who is expected to make his first court appearance in May -- is suing Genesis Security for $25,000 for wrongful dismissal, alleging it was "malicious, reprehensible" and meant "to minimize the negative publicity" arising from the video.

Rahnumah contends his actions during the arrest were "wholly consistent with the manner in which employees [of Genesis] ... acted in the performance of their duties."

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