Friday, July 29, 2011

Police brutality lawsuit in Jerry Amaro case can go forward

The US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco has found that Oakland Police lied, mirepresented evidence, and stonewalled the investigation into the March 23, 2000 police killing of Jerry Amaro. The ruling will allow a police brutality lawsuit filed by Amaro's family in 2009 to go forward.
Amaro was arrested for allegedly trying to buy crack cocaine from the undercover officers, who were posing as dealers. He later told jail officials, inmates and relatives that officers had beaten him before booking him, an account that two witnesses on the scene later supported, the appeals court said.

One witness, who was also arrested that night, said officers had repeatedly kicked Amaro in the ribs, punched him in the face and kneed him in the back, the court noted. The witness said Amaro had been bleeding from the nose and mouth when he was put in a police car.

The jail officer recalled that Amaro had bruises to his face and had complained about his ribs, and Amaro's cellmate said he could barely get out of bed. Amaro was released five days later, showed his mother his bruises and told her he had been denied treatment, the court said.

On April 18, 2000, a doctor told him he had suffered five rib fractures and a collapsed lung and needed emergency treatment. He died three days later, having opted to stay with a friend rather than receive treatment.
-SF Gate