June 19 (UPI) — Professional basketball player Sterling Brown filed a federal civil rights lawsuit Tuesday against Milwaukee and its police department over an incident this year in which he was tased.
The Milwaukee Bucks guard says in the suit police violated his Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment rights during an arrest in January, which stemmed from a parking violation in handicap stalls.
Brown was unarmed and never faced any criminal charges.
Brown’s attorney, Mark Thomsen, said Milwaukee police officers have a history of excessive force against black men.
“This federal lawsuit reflects the fact that for too long in this city African-American men have been arrested, abused, and … killed as a result of bad police work,” Thomsen said. “That work is a stain on the city, and it’s an insult to every good, decent police officer in this city and in this county.”
Brown said he was swarmed by police, “kneed in the groin,” tased and an officer stood on his ankle.
Thomsen said for “12 minutes he was left sitting or laying on the ground after being abused.”
Thirty minutes of body camera video released last month showed officers taking Brown to the ground and tasing him. After the video’s release, Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales said officers acted inappropriately and have since been disciplined. Milwaukee’s mayor has also apologized.
Brown’s suit names the City of Milwaukee, Morales and eight officers.
A rookie this past season, Brown told the Journal Sentinel the suit isn’t motivated by money — only he wants to change the way police officers treat minorities.
“That’s why I’m doing what I’m doing, so officers can be held accountable,” Brown said.