The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update

Local News

October 1, 2013

Decision expected in police brutality claim

Man says officers used excessive force in 2010 arrest

ANDERSON — A summary judgement could be made today on a 2010 civil case alleging police brutality by Anderson police officers.

Roger Chandler, 31, of Anderson, filed the tort claim in December 2011, alleging APD officers Ryan Geer, Brian Porter and Zane Sparks used excessive force when arresting him May 31, 2010.

Chandler and attorneys Lisa Deley and Mark Dudley have maintained that the officers violated the due-process clause of the 14th Amendment, which acts as a safeguard against unreasonable procedures by police.

According to the details of the criminal case, Chandler led APD officers on a high-speed chase on 14th and Main streets in downtown Anderson after officers, who had noticed a car being driven without its headlights, attempted a traffic stop.

Police say Chandler, previously convicted as a habitual traffic offender, sped away and ignored several red lights, until he lost control of the car, hit a parked pickup truck, and ran from officers on foot.

When officers finally cornered Chandler in the 2400 block of Noble Street, he appeared drunk and acted aggressively, elbowing Geer in the nose, according to police. Sparks used a taser on Chandler, and Geer elbowed Chandler two or three times in an attempt to subdue him, according to police.

In 2011, Chandler pleaded guilty to resisting arrest, operating a vehicle as a habitual traffic offender and operating while intoxicated, closing the door on the criminal case.

On Monday, city representatives requested a hearing on a motion for summary judgement in the case, essentially asking Judge George Pancol of Madison Circuit Court 2 to rule in favor of the city and dismiss the tort.

Pancol said he would likely decide today whether to rule in favor of the city and the officers involved or for the case to move forward to jury trial Oct. 21.

Deley said she would prefer the case go to trial and expects Pancol to rule in her favor.

“We feel like there’s overwhelming evidence to support our claims, and the case really requires a trial setting for those details to be brought out,” Deley said.

Like Jack Molitor on Facebook and follow him @aggiejack4 on Twitter, or call 640-4883.

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