The attorney for an Indian man who was left partially paralyzed after an encounter with Madison, Alabama Police expressed dismay that Officer Eric Parker is returning to the force, reports WHNT.
Parker used a leg whip that sent Sureshbhai Patel hard into the concrete pavement of the sidewalk.
“Police departments have a hard time disciplining their own,” said Hank Sherrod who filed a civil lawsuit against Parker and the city of Madison. “But you expect the one time [it could happen] is when it’s on video and there are serious consequences for somebody.”
Parker stopped to question Patel who had been walking in the neighborhood where he was visiting his son.
Patel was visiting from India and spoke little English. In police surveillance video, you can hear Parker becoming irritated for what he considered the confused Patel’s non-responsiveness to his questions.
Parker was recommended for termination by Police Chief Larry Muncey. But two juries could not reach a verdict on federal charges of using excessive force, and the judge acquitted him.
Muncey is on leave from the department for contempt of court after being accused of contacting police witnesses during the first trial. Acting Police Chief, Major Jim Cooke, reinstated Parker saying Parker did not violate policy.
“The city isn’t about sending the message we don’t tolerate police misconduct,” Sherrod said. “They’ve just sent the opposite message.”
Parker must undergo training before going back on duty.
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