Madison police in Alabama, US assaulted a 57-year-old Indian who was walking on the sidewalk, leaving him temporarily paralysed.
Sureshbhai Patel, who had been visiting his son in the US, had gone for a walk in his neighbourhood on Friday morning when he was stopped by two police officers, according to Al Jazeera.
The officers said they were responding to a suspicious person call made by a neighbour. When Sureshbhai tried communicating with the officers, saying "no English" and "India" and pointed to his son's house and even showed them the house number, the officers began patting him down. The police said that Sureshbhai put his hands in his pockets, after which the police officers slammed him face first into the ground.
“He was just out for a walk, and apparently someone made a suspicious person call…This is a grandfather who came to help his son and daughter-in-law with their 17-month-old son who was premature and developmentally delayed,” Al Jazeera quoted Henry F Sherrod, the attorney for the family, as saying.
A report in AL.com said that Sureshbhai was hospitalised after the incident and was unable to move his legs and has limited motion in his arms. His son Chirag said his father had no health problems before this incident.
"This is a good neighborhood. I didn't expect anything to happen," Sureshbhai's son, Chirag Patel, was quoted as saying in the report.
"This is broad daylight, walking down the street. There is nothing suspicious about Mr. Patel other than he has brown skin," Sherrod said.
Sherrod said the Patel family would sue the police, and said that there are audio and video recordings of the incident.
Madison Police, on the other hand, have refused to identify the officers involved.
Sureshbhai's son Chirag said he had come to the US around ten years ago to study engineering. "I'm totally devastated that I might have made a big mistake," he said.
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Updated Date: Feb 12, 2015 08:59:36 IST