Home / US / A black man who was led through Galveston, Texas by mounted police officers sued the city for $ 1 million

A black man who was led through Galveston, Texas by mounted police officers sued the city for $ 1 million

Donald Neely, 44, was arrested and charged with trespassing near a US post office in August last year. Court documents show that the case against him was closed in March.

His arrest received national attention after photos showed two mounted officers from the Galveston Police Department guiding Neely through the city with what appeared to be a rope. Police said at the time that the officer kept a “line” attached to Neely’s handcuffs, not a rope, though it is not clear what the difference is.

Critics and supporters said the photos evoke images of the slavery era, a point also in the lawsuit filed Wednesday by Houston attorney Julie Ketterman in Galveston County Courthouse.

“(The officers) knew or should have believed that Neely ̵

1; being a black man – being guided by a rope and mounted officers down a city street as if he were a slave would find this contact offensive,” the lawsuit reads .

The lawsuit claims that Neeley was humiliated while being led on the street.

“A lot of people stopped, stared and asked questions. Neely felt like he was being shown off like slaves once were,” the lawsuit claims.

Ketterman told CNN that Neely filed the lawsuit to make sure no one else does the same thing.

“Donald wants people to know that this lawsuit is not just about money,” he wrote in an email to CNN. “It is about what is right and wrong for all people – whether they are black or white or whether they have mental illness or whether they are homeless or not.”

Since then the city has stopped using the technology for transportation

The lawsuit claims that the agents injured Neely and caused him emotional distress. He also claims that they acted maliciously and negligently while arresting him at a US post office. The lawsuit is seeking more than $ 1 million in compensation.

Another lawyer from Neely has already claimed he has bipolar disorder and has been homeless for several years. The Houston Chronicle reported that Neely eventually moved in with her sister and received medical treatment.
Police unions defend mounted officers who escorted a handcuffed man

Donald Glywasky, the Galveston City Attorney, declined to comment, citing the pending litigation.

CNN also contacted Galveston Police for comment.

The Galveston Police Department previously apologized for Neely’s treatment, with her police chief saying last year that officers showed “poor judgment” and “could have waited for a unit. of transport to the place of arrest “.

The department said in the weeks following the incident that it changed its policy to stop the technique of using mounted horses to transport a person during an arrest.

The city requested a third-party investigation into the incident, which was conducted by the Texas Rangers and determined that the arrest did not justify a criminal investigation.

A separate county survey looked at the police department’s policies, training and practices and was tasked with making recommendations on any changes to be implemented.

The city released the camera footage of the body after receiving the county report, but did not release the report results. The report was sent to the Galveston Police Chief to determine if further action was needed, the city said last year.

CNN’s Melissa Gray contributed to this report.

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