Lawsuit filed against Lafayette Police alleging excessive force

Crime

LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) — A lawsuit has been filed against former Lafayette Police Chief Scott Morgan, five LPD officers, and the Lafayette Consolidated Government over an incident that happened at a Lafayette business in September, 2020.

The lawsuit alleges that the former police chief and five officers (John Doe #1-5) at the time “conspired and acted in concert together to injure the petitioner and his minor children.”

The Public Information Officer for Lafayette Police Sgt. Wayne Griffin told KLFY News that officers were dispatched to a local bowling alley in reference to a male displaying a gun to some kids.

According to the lawsuit, on Sept. 5, 2020, the five officers responded to a report of a man with a gun in the 3200 block of Ambassador Caffery Pkwy, but the officers did not find anyone with a gun, so they left.

According to the lawsuit, the officers conducted an unrelated traffic stop, 30 minutes later, at the same location and noticed 16-year-old J.C. waiting in line outside the business with his twin brother G.C. and other teenaged friends.

The lawsuit states that at the time of J.C.’s arrest, there was no evidence of or reports of him possessing a gun or any other weapon on his person, nor were there reports or complaints that J.C. had engaged in any illegal activity.

The lawsuit says after J.C.’s arrest, members of the public began questioning Police Officer John Doe #1 and/or the other Police officer defendants about J.C.’s arrest. The lawsuit claims that G.C. “calmly and rationally” approached one or more of the officers and inquired about his brother’s arrest.

The petitioners claim Police Officer #1 allegedly yelled at G.C., “get off me,” and forcefully pushed G.C. in his chest.

According to the lawsuit, no bystanders or G.C. touched or otherwise interfered with the actions or duties of the police officers.

The petitioners claim Police Officer #1 allegedly grabbed G.C.’s shirt and aggressively forced him backwards from the edge of the sidewalk to the door of the bowling alley, where he “violently slammed G.C.’s back into the glass door of the bowling alley entrance.”

The lawsuit states Police Officer #2 and Police Officer #3 then rushed over and held G.C. down as Police Officer #1 “repeatedly and brutally” punched G.C. in his face and head “at least five times,”.

G.C. was charged with interfering with a police investigation, resisting arrest, and battery of a police officer.

The lawsuit and police have confirmed that a gun was never found on either J.C. or G.C. nor was any weapon found anywhere at the scene.

The petitioners are requesting a jury trial.

KLFY News did confirm that the Lafayette Police Internal Affairs unit did investigate this incident. They handed their findings over to the District Attorney’s office who declined to file charges against the officers. The officers were placed on administrative leave during the investigations. Afterward, they were cleared in all 3 investigations, the officers were reinstated into their positions.

According to the lawsuit, there were 107 civil lawsuits filed against LPD between the years 2010-2019, and 14 alleging excessive force between 2007-2021.

To read the full lawsuit, download it here:

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