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Infuriating Video Shows Cop Attack Elderly Disabled Veteran, Breaking His Ribs

Buda, TX — Body cam video has been released showing a Texas cop — with a history of using excessive force — shove an elderly, disabled Vietnam veteran onto the concrete floor, breaking several of his ribs.

Now the man has filed a federal lawsuit alleging excessive force and unnecessary escalation of the incident.

Guadalupe and Juan Martinez, both in their 70s, lost track of each other on their scooters in a Buda, Texas Walmart on October 3, 2014.

Guadalupe, searching for her husband, briefly exited the store with the items she intended to later purchase still in the basket of her scooter.

But a Walmart employee saw her leave the store, assumed Guadalupe was shoplifting, detained her, and summoned Buda police to the scene.

While they waited for an officer to arrive, Walmart employees brought the elderly woman to a back room to explain she would be permanently banned from the store.

When Buda Police Officer Demerriel Young arrived, Mr. Martinez followed him into the cramped room to stay with his wife. Young insisted the elderly man wait outside while he interviewed Guadalupe.

“Just step outside,” Young tells Martinez.

“This is my wife,” he responds.

“Just step outside for a second,” Young insists.

“No sir, I’m not going to do that,” Martinez respectfully replies. “I’ve done nothing wrong. I’ve done nothing wrong.”

Young again demands Martinez step outside, interrupting the veteran as he tries to ask why he would need to leave his wife alone. But the unnecessarily obstinate officer retorts,

“I’m asking you to step outside. I just got here. Okay either you’re gonna step outside or I’m going to place you outside or I’m going to place you under arrest for interfering.”

As video now shows, Young grabbed Martinez with both hands and began pushing him out the door. Right outside the small office, Young shoves Martinez onto the hard floor and he screams out in obvious pain.

Guadalupe gets up to check on her injured husband — but Young blocks her.

“Have a seat ma’am,” he says, adding, “I did not do anything” — as if he were already attempting to shirk responsibility for the old man’s injuries.

“You pushed him,” Guadalupe says.

For five minutes, Martinez writhes on the floor waiting for paramedics to arrive, as video and court documents show.

“Officer Young approached Juan Martinez and asked him to leave the office. Mr. Martinez wanted to see his wife. Officer Young unnecessarily escalated the situation, and used force excessive to the need. Specifically, Officer Young tackled the elderly and disabled Mr. Martinez, failing to control the descent of Mr. Martinez and slammed him hard onto the floor. As a result, Mr. Martinez broke several ribs, and sustained various other injuries and damages and continues to incur medical treatment and physical difficulty related to the injuries caused by” Officer Young, the lawsuit states.

But the lawsuit against the City of Buda, Young, and Walmart, also makes clear the incident could have been prevented in a number of ways. Buda Police hired Young despite his record of using excessive force — then also failed to “retrain” the officer “or provide adequate supervision to prevent the incident in question.”

Even though the incident occurred just over two years ago, charges against the elderly Mrs. Martinez for shoplifting and against Mr. Martinez for interference are still pending.

“We all have the right not to be abused. Not to have police officers excessively use force against us. When there is an excessive use of force, that’s an infringement of our fourth amendment rights,” Robert Ranco, the attorney representing the couple, told KVUE. “When we look at Mr. Martinez in this circumstance, I think everything he did was completely reasonable, he was frustrated, he was not completely compliant, but he also was not aggressive and he didn’t pose any threat to anybody.”

The lawsuit accuses the city and Officer Young of violating the Martinez’ Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment rights, and Walmart of false imprisonment and negligence.

In a statement provided to KVUE, Walmart said:

“We take this matter seriously. We haven’t been served with the complaint yet. Once we have the opportunity to review the allegations, we’ll respond appropriately with the court.”

  • Jopseph Siejack

    bs

  • Larry Brothers

    They cannot keep their hands off people. No excuse for this. A little old man and his little old wife. Pathetic.

  • GracieW

    SO STUPID on multiple levels. First, as a former retail manager I can tell you when people are going to shoplift they don’t leave the items in plain view. All that idiot employee had to do was call her attention to the items in her cart and give her a chance to pay for them.

    Second, this cop is a bully and a thug. How do you “keep the peace” when shoving a disabled old man to the ground? One of those broken ribs could have punctured his pericardium and killed him. That is how my father died–he fell and his broken rib punctured the sac around his heart throwing him into cardiac arrest. That cop recklessly endangered the life of Mr. Martinez.

    This cop should be charged and thrown into jail.

    • JennaTrull

      I’m sorry about your father – that’s a bad way to go.

    • Nishi

      It does seem they would prefer to catch and charge people than to get the money for their products. Whoever said the lady had tried to pass fake receipts before better have proof, and it better not be just that the receipts were beyond the return period.

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    • Hugh Culliton

      Absolutly right! There was no need to involve police. That said, after having many students who’ve worked at Wal-mart, I realize that an employee must follow procedure over common sense, and initiative is not rewarded. Still, once involved, the officer could have easily de-escalated (or prevent the escalation that he initiated) the situation by either allowing Mr. Martinez to sit with hs wife, or – if this was the case – his procedure wouldn’t allow that, simply explaining to Mr. Martinez the process by which he had to conduct his investigation. But rather than using his head-meat, he just went full arbitrary authority and literally (and most likely legally) assaulted an innocent citizen for asking questions.

      So I can only conclude that he was either:
      A – stupid
      B – An arsehole, or
      C – all of the above.

  • LotharLocnar

    What would’ve happened if the cop was white and the old man was black.Would we hear that blacklivesmatter?

    • Madania Graves

      You should ask where is ALL LIVES Matter

      • Ed

        LIFE Matters!

    • kiljoy616

      Could not help been a racist.

  • Cup_of_STFU

    There are simply a million better ways in which the officer could have handled this. These days officers act more like parents scolding children, than they do adults interacting with adults. A parent tells a child to do something and says that they will be grounded if they don’t do it. An officer tells a person they’ll be arrested if they do not comply, even if the order is unlawful. This is an attempt at forcing a fearful person into complying, because they do not know how else to handle the situation.

    An officer is only as good as his training. Hair dressers receive more training than a police officer. No wonder they fúck up so often.

    • kiljoy616

      An officer is not his training its his attitude of the world and others. Just like a man makes the uniform not the other way around. All the training in the world will not change how a person handles those he sees as no better than a cockroach.

  • andre carr

    In this case, the D.A. needs to get their heads out of their but’s and do their job and charge the cop with either aggravated assault or aggravated battery on a person 65 years or older! No exceptions just do it and get their crap together for 5 min’s that would at
    least get this useless cop off of the streets before he next shoots some UN
    armed black motorist next time. But most likely the district attorney is golf buddies
    with the chief of police and just don’t care in the long run.

  • andre carr

    In this case, the D.A. needs to get their heads out of their but’s and do their job and charge the cop with either aggravated assault or aggravated battery on a person 65 years or older! No exceptions just do it and get their crap together for 5 min’s that would at
    least get this useless cop off of the streets before he next shoots some UN
    armed black motorist next time. But most likely the district attorney is golf buddies
    with the chief of police and just don’t care in the long run.

    • kiljoy616

      The DEA is in a way the same as the cops, people who work together are not going to normally turn on those they need to do their own job. So unless there is an outside force with teeth to deal with this kind of problem it will never go away.

  • Lobo06

    Thirty million in punitive damages aginst the cop shop and twenty five million against wal mart for creating a situation of violence against the couple.

  • acerman66

    She has to leave the store before they can call it shoplifting! Every dummy knows that.