Video: Iowa Cop Pulls Dreadlocks Out of Black Man's Hair, Files Lawsuit
Video shows Montavis Keller being disrespected and assaulted by a cop in Waterloo, Iowa.
Now Keller is taking Officer Adam Wittmayer to court for pulling his hair and swearing at him following a car chase that occurred in 2016.
In a suit filed April 13, 2018 in Black Hawk County District Court, Keller says Officer Wittmayer struck him and pulled his braids while he was face down with his hands cuffed behind his back.
Keller, 26, is represented by attorney Thomas Frerichs of Waterloo, and the suit names as defendants the city of Waterloo, Wittmayer and Chief Daniel Trelka.
The suit alleges civil right violations through assault and battery, excessive force, failure to train and supervise and failure to investigate the use of force. Keller is seeking damages to cover physical and emotional suffering, future loss of enjoyment of life and medical expenses, attorney fees and litigation costs and punitive damages.
“While Keller is on the ground with his hands behind his back, Defendant Wittmayer approached him, knelt down and forcibly grabbed his hair, ripping some of it out, and forcibly struck Keller more than once with his hand in the back of the head, injuring Keller. Wittmayer also uses threatening and abusive language directed at Keller,” Frerichs wrote in the lawsuit.
The Attorney General’s Office declined to prosecute Wittmayer, saying no charges were “sustainable.”