CHICAGO (CBS) — City attorneys are asking aldermen to approve settlements in three more lawsuits accusing Chicago police officers of misconduct, including an officer caught on video apparently dragging a teenage girl down a set of stairs at Marshall High School last year, before the officer and his partner tased her.
The City Council Finance Committee on Monday will consider a proposed $300,000 settlement with Dnigma Howard, who sued the city and Officers Johnnie Pierre and Sherry Tripp over the incident on Jan. 29, 2019 at Marshall High School.READ MORE: Man Shot Dead In Brainerd Neighborhood
The officers were asked to escort the teenager out of the school following a confrontation with a staff member. Surveillance video from the school shows Dnigma, who was 16 at the time, starting to walk away from one of the officers when he grabs her and forces her towards the stairs.
Video from the floor below shows Dnigma and Tripp entangled on the stairs as Pierre appears to be dragging the girl down the stairs by one of her legs. Police have said Dnigma tried to bite one of the officers. That’s when she says she was tased.
The family’s attorney has said the video shows the officers lied about what happened.
Dnigma was charged with two felony counts of aggravated battery after the incident, but prosecutors later dropped the charges.
A CPS spokesperson last year said the school district is deeply disturbed and troubled by the incident. Both the Civilian Office of Police Accountability and the school district’s inspector general are investigating what happened.
In addition to the proposed settlement in Dnigma’s case, aldermen also will weigh a proposed $295,000 settlement with siblings Jamell, Trezell, and Janell Island, who sued the city and several officers after police broke down the door of the wrong home while conducting a raid in June 2018.
Around 2 p.m. on June 12, offices raided the first-floor apartment of a building near 52nd and Wells in the Fuller Park neighborhood. They damaged the front door in the process, handcuffed three people inside, then tore through the family’s belongings before discovering they’d entered the wrong home.
Police said the officers went to the address listed on a warrant, but the paperwork had the wrong information.
“We conduct hundreds of raids every week, and we depend on different avenues in order to obtain that information. So when we do hit a wrong house, listen, that’s not a good thing,” then-Police Supt. Eddie Johnson said the day after the raid. “We just have to do better at ensuring that where we’re getting that information from is legitimate, and we just have to do a better job of ensuring that we are hitting the right place.”
The raid traumatized Terricky Pender and her three children, including her son, Trezelle Island, who said he thought it was a robber breaking in.READ MORE: Shots Fired At Police In North Austin
“I just heard a big boom, breaking straight through the door and my little brother, he had ran to the back,” he said.
But the people who broke in were in uniform, and came armed with a search warrant.
“They told me and him to go to the back; go back and lay down on the ground. Put handcuffs on the back, and then told us don’t move, and put their guns up,” Island said.
His sister, Janelle, also was home at the time.
“When they told me to come out, they told me to put my hands behind my back and put handcuffs on me,” she said.
It turned out the paperwork for the raid had the wrong address, and police later apologized.
The CBS 2 Investigators have documented a disturbing pattern of officers repeatedly busting into families’ houses, pointing guns at their children’s heads, and ransacking their belongings – in many cases, without even verifying whether they had the right address.
CBS 2 Investigator Dave Savini’s 40-part series on wrong raids by Chicago Police led to a new Illinois law written to protect children from unreasonable police force, an inspector general investigation into CPD policies and procedures, and finally in January, a commitment from Chicago Police to change how they obtain and execute search warrants.
The final proposed settlement on the agenda for the Finance Committee on Monday is a $162,500 payment to Patrick Bowden, who accused three officers of tackling him to the ground without justification during a street stop in Homan Square in February 2018.
Bowden’s lawsuit accuses the officers of arresting him without any probable cause or reasonable suspicion, falsely claiming he was concealing something in his waistband, planting a gun, and falsifying police reports to justify their actions.
The lawsuit states Bowden was charged with seven felonies, but a judge quashed his arrest after determining his testimony of what happened was credible, and the testimony of an officer who testified against him was not. The charges were later dismissed.MORE NEWS: Ed's Driveway: Ford Mustang Mach-E
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