East Ridge Sued Over Alleged Civil Rights Violations, Malicious Prosecution

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) — This morning, local attorney Robin Flores filed a lawsuit against the City of East Ridge and two of its police officers on behalf of Ronald Cummins.

The lawsuit alleges six counts of civil rights violations, one count of battery, one count of assault, one count of civil conspiracy, and one count of malicious prosecution.

In July of 2021, Cummins, when was 70 years old, a police officer detained him with a “leg sweep” after a verbal exchange.

“Once he’s slammed down on the pavement, he and the female officer pile on. He’s face down in a positional asphyxiation position. The female officer is actually pressing with both hands in the man’s back, down against him,” said Flores.

Among the charges included in the lawsuit is a first amendment violation.

“The first amendment violation falls strictly under City of Houston v. Hill, which was a 1986-87 Supreme Court decision where it’s okay for people to sit back and ask questions and question the conduct of police officers,” said Flores.

The lawsuit alleges that the officers’ behavior was encouraged by the policies and customs of the East Ridge Police Department.

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