Police brutality claim leads to civil lawsuit against MPD - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

Police brutality claim leads to civil lawsuit against MPD

Antonio Haigler says he was on his mother's porch when police units stormed the house and beat him. MPD denies the accusation. Antonio Haigler says he was on his mother's porch when police units stormed the house and beat him. MPD denies the accusation.

Posted by Samuel King - bio | email

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - The Montgomery Police Department faces a federal lawsuit alleging police brutality.  A man says police officers beat him while they were conducting a search at his mother's home.

Both sides in the lawsuit agree that police entered an apartment inside the Sherwood development on Hatton Avenue August 77th, looking for drugs but that's where the stories diverge.

Antonio Haigler says he was on his mother's porch when police units stormed the house.

"This is something I have to go through," Haigler said.  "I have to deal with this the rest of my life.  You know my kids when I leave the house they're kind of scared for me.  They ask if I'm ok, and I say yeah I'm ok."

Haigler still has trouble talking about the incident, but his attorney says he was brutally beaten.  Haigler and his mother have filed suit against the city alleging excessive force, misconduct and false reporting.

"They took him from inside the house, outside the house and threw on the sidewalk and kicking him, they threw him up against the police truck," said Haigler.  "He was handcuffed, he wasn't offering any resistance."

Haigler's mother, Carolyn Smith, said her leg was injured during the incident.  She said police ransacked the apartment.

"I just want justice to be served, because it was wrong what they did to Antonio and me," Smith said.  "It's just real embarrassing, because we don't do drugs, never done drugs."

Smith said drugs were never found inside the apartment.  In the suit, it is alleged that drugs belonging to someone else were found outside of the apartment.  The suit seeks unspecified damages, but the family would like to see the officers disciplined.

Director of Public Safety J. Christopher Murphy disputed the family's account of the facts in the case.  He said police were engaged in a pursuit of Haigler, when he ran into the apartment.   He also said drugs were found inside the apartment.   He also said there is no evidence the police acted inappropriately.

"All evidence that has been brought to our attention at this point is that they followed the force continuum and they were within that in making an arrest and there was no excessive force,"  Murphy said.

The family also alleges in the suit Acting Chief Kevin Murphy offered to drop the charges in the case if the family decided not to sue.  Murphy said that was a misrepresentation and that he was just informing the family of the judicial process needed to get the charges dropped.  The criminal charges in the case are still pending. 

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