A Washington state teen has been awarded $500,000 in federal court, after being shocked with a stun gun by an off-duty police officer working security. The case stems from an incident that occurred four years ago when the young woman was pulled off her bicycle and tased.
As the Associated Press reports, Monique Tillman sued Officer Jared Williams and the city of Tacoma over the violent attack, which happened in May 2014. The ordeal was captured on surveillance video. Tillman, who was 15 at the time, and her then 16-year-old brother, Eric Branch, were riding their bikes through a mall parking lot when Williams pulled Tillman over. When the teen asked why she had been stopped, Williams told her she had caused a disturbance. He said was going to issue her a warning for trespassing, which meant she would be arrested if she ever returned to the mall. Tillman then reiterated her question again, and when she attempted to ride away, Williams pushed her to the ground and tased her.
Maria Lee, A spokeswoman for the city, said in a statement that the verdict was disappointing. Is it though? Getting tased for riding your bike hardly seems like a justifiable use of force. The spokeswoman says that Tacoma’s attorneys may pursue an appeal after they review the case. Meanwhile, Williams still has his job with the department, which, personally, seems like a liability. Anyway, Tillman’s brother was also awarded $50,000 in the case.