Sussex County Man Files Suit Claiming 'Unnecessary Force' - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Sussex Co. Man Files Suit Claiming 'Unnecessary Force' by Seaford Police

Posted:

DAGSBORO, Del.- It was Reginald Johnson's 43rd birthday, when he claims he was brutally assaulted by Seaford police officers after getting pulled over. It was all caught on camera. Johnson has filed a federal lawsuit against the City of Seaford and two of the responding officers, Cpl. Marc Russell and Officer Mills.

The incident happened on the evening of Sept. 18, 2011. According to Johnson, he was on his way home to Dagsboro after celebrating his birthday. But along the way, he was pulled over. And as police video shows, Johnson was tased and handcuffed by police. Lawyers for Johnson argue those officers used "unnecessary force."

In video released from a police dash cam, an officer can be heard yelling "Step out!"

"Ok, I'm getting out, I'm getting out," Johnson is heard yelling back.

Within seconds, the video shows Johnson getting jolted by a taser and falling to the ground, crying out in pain.

Now lawyers for Johnson are crying foul.

"There's ongoing litigation right now, so I can't really go into the facts of the case," noted Stephen Norman with the Norman Law Firm. "But what I can tell you is the video itself is very descriptive about exactly what occurred to Mr. Johnson on his 43rd birthday."

According to police reports, a police tracking device went off as Johnson's car drove past, indicating the cellphone of "a wanted felon" Delaware State Police officers were searching for was inside.

In the police video, Johnson can be heard repeatedly asking "What have I done?"

Later, when officers ask for his name, Johnson is heard responding, "My name is Reginald Johnson, man."

But police questioned him.

"Reginald Johnson?"

"Yeah," he replied.

"You sure about that?"

In a statement to WBOC from representatives for the officers and the City of Seaford, lawyer Dan Griffith said, "We believe that, once all of the facts and surrounding circumstances are considered, the case is entirely defensible. We look forward to trying the case in the court where it was filed, rather than in the media".

Police reports indicate officers were "concerned for their safety," and warned Johnson he would be "Tased."

At one point in the video, the lawsuit claims an officer on scene can be heard talking about "planting drugs" in the car.

"Somebody drop the dope in here," remarked one of the officers, later identified as Cpl. Aaron Mitchell, after a handcuffed Johnson was put inside a police cruiser.

Johnson was later taken to Nanticoke Memorial Hospital where he was treated for numerous injuries.

According to court documents, officers later admitted to Johnson that he was not the individual being sought by police. However, he was still charged with resisting arrest and disorderly conduct.

Those criminal charges were dropped in March of this year.

This latest action represents a civil lawsuit. Johnson is seeking compensation for both physical and psychological injuries he claims resulted from his interaction with police on that September 2011 night.

  • Delmarvawide NewsDelmarvawide NewsMore>>

  • Chincoteague Oldest Saltwater Cowboy Dies at 78

    Chincoteague Oldest Saltwter Cowboy Dies at 78

    11/18/2017 19:22:00 -05:002017-11-19 00:22:00 GMT
    Saturday, November 18 2017 10:25 PM EST2017-11-19 03:25:46 GMT
    Wesley Bloxom was Delmarva's famous Saltwater Cowboy. He was a father, a brother, Chincoteague volunteer firefighter. His younger brother, Paul Bloxom, explains how much he meant. Bloxom died earlier this week after battling cancer.More
    Wesley Bloxom was Delmarva's famous Saltwater Cowboy. He was a father, a brother, Chincoteague volunteer firefighter. His younger brother, Paul Bloxom, explains how much he meant. Bloxom died earlier this week after battling cancer.More
  • Deadly Hit and Run Collision Prompts Investigation

    Deadly Hit and Run Collision Prompts Investigation

    11/18/2017 21:59:00 -05:002017-11-19 02:59:00 GMT
    Saturday, November 18 2017 9:59 PM EST2017-11-19 02:59:14 GMT
    ELLENDALE, Del. - Police are investigating a deadly hit and run crash involving a pedestrian Thursday night.More
    ELLENDALE, Del. - Police are investigating a deadly hit and run crash involving a pedestrian Thursday night.More
  • Rehoboth Beach Raises Rental Tax

    Rehoboth Beach Raises Rental Tax

    11/18/2017 16:21:00 -05:002017-11-18 21:21:00 GMT
    Saturday, November 18 2017 4:21 PM EST2017-11-18 21:21:59 GMT
    Rehoboth Beach, DelawareRehoboth Beach, Delaware
    Rehoboth Beach De. (AP) - A popular Delaware beach town has voted to double its tax on residential rentals.The City of Rehoboth Beach announced Saturday that its commissioners approved an increase on the rental tax from 3 to 6 percent.The tax applieMore
    Rehoboth Beach De. (AP) - A popular Delaware beach town has voted to double its tax on residential rentals.The City of Rehoboth Beach announced Saturday that its commissioners approved an increase on the rental tax from 3 to 6 percent.The tax applieMore
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Deadly Hit and Run Collision Prompts Investigation

    Deadly Hit and Run Collision Prompts Investigation

    11/18/2017 21:59:00 -05:002017-11-19 02:59:00 GMT
    Saturday, November 18 2017 9:59 PM EST2017-11-19 02:59:14 GMT
    ELLENDALE, Del. - Police are investigating a deadly hit and run crash involving a pedestrian Thursday night.More
    ELLENDALE, Del. - Police are investigating a deadly hit and run crash involving a pedestrian Thursday night.More
  • Chincoteague Oldest Saltwater Cowboy Dies at 78

    Chincoteague Oldest Saltwter Cowboy Dies at 78

    11/18/2017 19:22:00 -05:002017-11-19 00:22:00 GMT
    Saturday, November 18 2017 10:25 PM EST2017-11-19 03:25:46 GMT
    Wesley Bloxom was Delmarva's famous Saltwater Cowboy. He was a father, a brother, Chincoteague volunteer firefighter. His younger brother, Paul Bloxom, explains how much he meant. Bloxom died earlier this week after battling cancer.More
    Wesley Bloxom was Delmarva's famous Saltwater Cowboy. He was a father, a brother, Chincoteague volunteer firefighter. His younger brother, Paul Bloxom, explains how much he meant. Bloxom died earlier this week after battling cancer.More
  • Parkside High School Teacher Back Behind Bars

    Parkside High School Teacher Back Behind Bars

    11/17/2017 17:29:00 -05:002017-11-17 22:29:00 GMT
    Friday, November 17 2017 5:29 PM EST2017-11-17 22:29:39 GMT
    Monica W. SneeMonica W. Snee
    The Wicomico County Sheriff's Office says the Parkside High School teacher arrested earlier this week in connection to a drug investigation is back behind bars.More
    The Wicomico County Sheriff's Office says the Parkside High School teacher arrested earlier this week in connection to a drug investigation is back behind bars.More
  • Most Popular VideosMost Popular VideosMore>>

  • Chincoteague's Oldest Saltwater Cowboy Dies at 78

    Chincoteague's Oldest Saltwater Cowboy Dies at 78

    Many today mourned the loss of the oldest Chincoteague Saltwater Cowboy. Wesley Bloxom was best known for his passion and involvement in the Chincoteague Pony Swim, one of Delmarva's biggest events. Today, his life was celebrated. Caroline Coles reports.

    More

    Many today mourned the loss of the oldest Chincoteague Saltwater Cowboy. Wesley Bloxom was best known for his passion and involvement in the Chincoteague Pony Swim, one of Delmarva's biggest events. Today, his life was celebrated. Caroline Coles reports.

    More
  • State Police Investigating Serious Crash in Ellendale

    State Police Investigating Serious Crash in Ellendale

    Delaware State Police are investigating a serious crash Friday between a car and a pick-up truck at the intersection of Hummingbird Road and Holly Tree Road in Ellendale.

    More

    Delaware State Police are investigating a serious crash Friday between a car and a pick-up truck at the intersection of Hummingbird Road and Holly Tree Road in Ellendale.

    More
  • Parkside High School Teacher Back Behind Bars

    Parkside High School Teacher Back Behind Bars

    The Wicomico County Sheriff's Office says the Parkside High School teacher arrested earlier this week in connection to a drug investigation is back behind bars. Monica Snee, 51, of Salisbury was released from prison after posting $50,000 bond. A district court judge revoked the bond and issued a bench warrant today. As a result, deputies located and arrested Snee in the area of Westbrook Drive in Salisbury.

    More

    The Wicomico County Sheriff's Office says the Parkside High School teacher arrested earlier this week in connection to a drug investigation is back behind bars. Monica Snee, 51, of Salisbury was released from prison after posting $50,000 bond. A district court judge revoked the bond and issued a bench warrant today. As a result, deputies located and arrested Snee in the area of Westbrook Drive in Salisbury.

    More
Powered by Frankly

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 WBOC. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices