SPD Officer Faces Two Lawsuits Alleging Excessive Force - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

SPD Officer Faces Two Lawsuits Alleging Excessive Force

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SALISBURY, Md.- The three men who filed a lawsuit accusing Salisbury police officer Justin Aita of excessive force outside Salisbury University on May 3 made an appearance in Wicomico District Court on Monday. Luke Rommel, who is the attorney for Curtis Adams, Travis Guthrie, and Abdi Gelata - all SU students at the time of the alleged incident - said the case will likely move out of District Court.  

"What all three guys did was prayed a jury trial, which means the case moves from the District Court to the Circuit Court for trial," Rommel said. 

Rommel said requesting a jury trial was the best move for the three men.

"We thought that was the best way to tell our story and I think the state's attorney might share that concern with us where we want 12 members of the community to hear the case and ultimately decide the outcome," Rommel said.  

Rommel said he expects to hear a decision from the court within the next two weeks on when the jury trial will take place, but added it may be a matter of months until Adams, Gelata, and Guthrie meet in court again.

The second lawsuit was filed against officer Aita by 15-year-old Renaldo Mesadieu and his aunt, Alexandra Francois who claim they were assaulted by the officer on Aug. 11. They will meet Tuesday morning in Wicomico County Circuit Court.
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