A San Francisco cop has sued the city, claiming he was racially profiled and had excessive force used against him during a traffic stop earlier this year.
KTVU reports that Lorenzo Adamson filed the civil rights lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Oakland on Tuesday against the city of San Francisco, Police Chief Greg Suhr and Officers Brian Stansbury, Daniel Dudley and Christopher O'Brien.
The 43-year-old Adamson, an officer at the Bayview police station, was on disability leave due to a back injury when he was stopped by police in May. He was reportedly pulled over because the license plate on his vehicle was not visible.
According to the suit, Stansbury immediately asked Adamson if he was on probation or parole, a question that made Adamson believe he was being racially profiled, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. Adamson is black and Stansbury is white.
Adamson reportedly asked the officer, "What does not having a plate on my car have to do with being on parole or probation? Shouldn't you be asking for my license, registration and insurance?" the suit said.
Stansbury answered, "That's what we do out here," according to the suit.
As Adamson got out of his car and tried to explain that he was a police officer on disability leave, Dudley allegedly began applying a chokehold on him and tackled him to the ground, the lawsuit claims.
The officers allegedly then grabbed Adamson's police gun, handcuffed him, and held him face-down on the ground until backup officers arrived and identified him as a member of the police force, according to the lawsuit, which also alleges that the officers' treatment caused Adamson severe pain and aggravated his back injury.
Shortly after the incident, Adamson’s attorney, John Burris, said his client had his license plate inside his vehicle, but it wasn’t visible because he had problems mounting it.
The suit seeks unspecified financial compensation for lost pay, medical expenses and emotional distress as well as punitive damages for the officers' alleged "malicious, wanton and oppressive" conduct.