Madison, AL-- A federal grand jury has indicted Officer Eric Sloan Parker, 26, for civil rights violations relating to an incident captured on dashcam video February 6.
In the video, he can be seen assaulting an innocent grandfather out for a morning stroll. The attack left him temporarily paralyzed in a hospital bed, all because the elderly man could not understand English, and therefore, the officer's commands.
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Sureshbhai Patel is an Indian citizen who had come to the United States to help his son and his wife with their new baby as his son went back to school for his master’s degree. The innocent grandfather was taking a morning walk when a bigoted neighbor called the police claiming he was concerned about a strange man walking in his neighborhood. The neighbor described the gentleman as, “a skinny black guy, he’s got a toboggan on, he’s really skinny.”
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When police arrived to unjustly harass him, he could not understand their commands or what the situation was. This resulted in the barbaric Officer Parker throwing him face first into the ground while holding his hands behind his back.
Patel was left temporarily paralyzed and hospitalized for several weeks with fused vertebrae. He has only recently regained mobility with the help of a walker. The man had simply been out for a walk and had committed absolutely no crime to warrant being approached, let alone assaulted.
The department had issued a public apology to the family and arrested and fired the officer. He was charged with third-degree assault, a misdemeanor to which he has pleaded not guilty, and was freed the same day on a $1,000 bond. The local charges will be prosecuted separately from the federal indictment.
The federal indictment states that Parker deprived Patel of his rights under the US Constitution to be secure from unreasonable seizures. These rights include the right to be free from unreasonable force by someone acting under color of law, and carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison should he be found guilty.
A fundraiser for Patel's medical expenses raised over $200,000. You can donate here.