Two Mistrials in Two Trials for Alabama Cop Who Left Man Paralyzed
For the second time in two months, his trial for beating a man from India unable to understand English resulted in a mistrial.
In the first trial in September; the judge ordered a mistrial after a jury could not agree on a verdict, NBC reports.
In the most recent trial, the court proceeding ended the same way.
Upon deliberating for three days, the jury voted twice, but could not reach a unanimous verdict. The jury was comprised of nine women and three men.
The jury informed U.S. District Judge Madeline Haikala that a verdict could not be reached. Hence, Judge Haikala ordered a mistrial this week.
Sureshbhai Patel was visiting his family in Madison, Alabama, from India. Patel was taking a walk in his family’s suburban high class, low crime neighborhood.
A 911 call was made about a suspicious skinny black man walking around the neighborhood.
Reacting on the 911 call, Officer Parker decided to illegally stop and detain Patel.
The officers’ have Patel handcuffed behind his back; it was then that all of a sudden, Officer Parker violently slams Patel to the ground face first, paralyzing him.
Patel spoke little to no English, but was never combative to or resisted the officers’.
Parker was charged with third-degree assault. The Madison police chief even recommended that Parker be fired.
Yet, Robert Tuten, Parker’s attorney made this misguided, opening statement:
“When you come to the U.S., we expect you to follow our laws and speak our language.”
Parker testified that he was concerned Patel may have had a weapon. Parker also said he lost his balance during the take-down.
One of the responding officers’ on scene testified in court that, “Patel did not pose a threat to police and that Patel did not jerk his hand, as if reaching for a knife or a gun.”
Patel himself testified at the trial saying via an interpreter, “They put their hands on me and I was just standing and did not move.”
The Governor of Alabama Robert Bentley, even issued an apology to India’s General Counsel for the excessive force Patel encountered from Officer Parker:
“I deeply regret the unfortunate use of excessive force by the Madison Police Department on Sureshbhai Patel and for the injuries sustained by Mr. Patel. I sincerely hope that Mr. Patel continues to improve and that he will regain full use of his legs,”
“Finally, and most important, please accept our sincere apology for this tragic incident to your government, Mr. Patel, and the citizens of India who reside and work in our state.”
It is not clear whether state prosecutors will pursue a third trial. Watch the dash cam video below.